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China's UnionPay teams up with Australian bank, shopping icon


10:02, May 29, 2013

SYDNEY, May 29 (Xinhua) -- China's UnionPay bank card network launched a new partnership with Australia's Commonwealth Bank and iconic department store David Jones in Sydney on Wednesday.

UnionPay is in the process of an Australian expansion, set to streamline the process for Chinese visitors and businesses to engage with Australian companies.

"We have long been keen to expand our presence in Australia," said UnionPay Chairman Su Ning.

The Commonwealth Bank will begin a rollout of acceptance of UnionPay cards from July 2013, meaning 3.5 billion cards will be accepted at over 170,000 point-of-sale terminals across Australia.

Business travelers, students and migrants from China will be able to use their UnionPay cards across one of the largest EFTPOS terminals in Australia, making it easier and safer for them to make purchases.

"Our partnership with UnionPay is further evidence of our commitment to supporting Australian businesses, providing customers with the ability to process a wider range of payment options and tap into a growing customer base," said Commonwealth Bank Group Executive for Institutional Banking and Markets, Ian Saines.

David Jones, one of Australia's biggest department stores, also announced the launch of UnionPay acceptance in its stores Wednesday. It is keen to capitalise on the growing number of Chinese visitors to Australia (currently more than 700,000 per year).

"We have long recognised that as retailers we are competing internationally and the ability to tap into the lucrative Chinese market, through both Chinese visitors to Australia and Chinese nationals residing temporarily in Australia, is a great strategic advantage for us," said David Jones CEO and Managing Director Paul Zahra.

The average transaction size processed on UnionPay cards is reported to be greater than any other international card, making it an attractive sales opportunity.

The partnerships again demonstrate Australia's commitment to capturing more opportunities with China in the Asian Century, as the Chinese economy continues to grow.

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