Card and online spending to accelerate as Belgium slowly opens up hospitality sector

COVID-19 has hit the Belgian economy hard, but the hospitality sector slowly opening up should give it, and the payments industry, a much-needed boost, according to GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company.

GlobalData expects M-commerce to be one of the beneficiaries of the pandemic, as well as bars and restaurants reopening. The company forecasts a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 19.4% in transaction value up to 2023 and growth of 26.3% in 2020, as consumers look for contactless payments methods. Strong growth was already anticipated before the pandemic (22.1% in 2020), but this has further accelerated that.

Ravi Sharma, Payments Analyst at GlobalData, comments: “Bars, restaurants and gyms reopened in early June and swimming pools, spas and events with an audience of up to 200 opened from the beginning of July. These developments will provide employment opportunities and increase consumer spending, which in turn will support the payments industry.”

The total drop in consumer spending during this crisis has been partially offset by a rise in online spending, as wary consumers have been staying at home and using the online channel.

Sharma adds: “A rise in contactless payments is expected as consumers return to shops, bars and restaurants. Online payments solutions such as Paypal and Masterpass, as well as mobile wallets including Apple Pay and Payconiq are expected to benefit.”

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