South Korea Cards and Payments – Opportunities and Risks to 2027

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South Korea Cards and Payments Market Report Overview

The annual value of card transactions in the South Korea cards and payments market is estimated to be $991.2 billion in 2023 and is expected to grow at a CAGR of more than 7% during 2023-2027. South Korea’s cards and payments industry is well-developed. The country’s consumers are prolific users of payment cards. A strong banking population, high financial awareness, banks incentivizing customers through a range of benefits, and government support to boost cashless payment methods have driven payment card adoption in the country.

South Korea Card Transactions Outlook, 2023-2027 ($ Billion)

South Korea Card Transactions Outlook, 2023-2027 ($ Billion)

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The South Korea cards and payments market research report provides a detailed analysis of market trends in the South Korean cards and payments industry. It provides values and volumes for several key performance indicators in the industry including cash, mobile wallets, credit transfers, cards, direct debits, and cheques during the review period. The report also analyzes various payment card markets operating in the industry. It provides detailed information on the number of cards in circulation, transaction values, and volumes during the review period and over the forecast period. It also offers information on the country’s competitive landscape, including market shares of issuers and schemes. The report also covers regulatory policy details and recent regulatory structure changes. It includes information on the payment instruments that are in use in the South Korean market, the key segments within the market, as well as the companies associated with the South Korean cards and payments market.

Annual Value of Card Transactions (2023) $991.2 billion
CAGR (2023-2027) >7%
Forecast Period 2023-2027
Historical Period 2019-2022
Key Payment Instruments ·        Cards

·        Mobile Wallets

·        Credit Transfers

·        Cash

·        Direct Debits

·        Cheques

Key Segments ·        Card-Based Payments

·        E-Commerce Payments

·        In-Store Payments

·        Buy Now Pay Later

·        Mobile Payments

·        P2P Payments

·        Bill Payments

·        Alternative Payments

Leading Players ·        NongHyup Bank

·        KB Kookmin Bank

·        Shinhan Bank

·        WOORI BANK

·        Industrial Bank of Korea

·        Samsung

·        Hana Financial Group

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South Korea Cards and Payments Market Dynamics

With the necessary payment infrastructure in place – which includes ubiquitous ATMs and well-developed point-of-sale (POS) infrastructure – consumers are gradually becoming more aware of the benefits of payment cards. Although debit cards lead in terms of circulation, credit cards are more popular for payments.

Besides cards, the availability of domestic alternative payment solutions such as Samsung Pay, Naver Pay, and KakaoPay and international solutions such as Apple Pay – as well as innovative payment solutions including self-checkout stores, contactless biometric payments, and QR codes – will increase the adoption of electronic payments further. However, high inflation, economic instability, and geopolitical uncertainty pose challenges to the cards and payments industry.

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South Korea Cards and Payments Market Segmentation by Payment Instruments

Cards are the dominant payment method by transaction volume in 2023.

The key payment instruments in the South Korea cards and payments market are cards, mobile wallets, credit transfers, cash, direct debits, and cheques. Cards are the leading payment method accounting for most of the transaction volume in the South Korean cards and payments market. The rising banking population, growing adoption of contactless cards, and government efforts to boost financial inclusion have contributed to growth in the payment card market.

South Korea Cards and Payments Market Analysis by Payment Instruments (Volume), 2023 (%)

South Korea Cards and Payments Market Analysis by Payment Instruments (Volume), 2023 (%)

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South Korea Cards and Payments Market Segments

Visa is the main player in the South Korean credit and debit card market.

The key segments in the South Korea cards and payments market are card-based payments, e-commerce payments, in-store payments, buy now pay later, mobile payments, and alternative payments among others.

Card-Based Payments: The South Korean payment card market is mature and has recorded significant growth both in terms of card payment volume and value. The increasing preference for contactless cards and electronic payments are among the key drivers of card-based payments for low-value, day-to-day transactions. The emergence of digital-only banks, strong e-commerce growth, and the growing adoption of contactless payments are expected to further boost electronic payments in the country. Debit cards are the leading card type in terms of number of cards in circulation. Food and drink dominate transaction value across all card types.

South Korea Cards and Payments Market Analysis by Debt and Credit Card Providers, 2023 (%)

South Korea Cards and Payments Market Analysis by Debt and Credit Card Providers, 2023 (%)

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South Korea Cards and Payments Market - Competitive Landscape

Some of the leading players in the South Korea cards and payments market are:

  • NongHyup Bank
  • KB Kookmin Bank
  • Shinhan Bank
  • WOORI BANK
  • Industrial Bank of Korea
  • Samsung
  • Hana Financial Group

Shinhan Bank: The company offers the Shinhan Electric Vehicle debit card to promote debit card usage for transport. Shinhan Card’s Hi-pass debit card offers discounts on payments at highway tolls. Shinhan Card partnered with TV broadcasting and communications company LG HelloVision to offer the LG HelloVision Shinhan Card, which provides discounts on purchases made using the card for customers of the LG HelloVision mobile network. Shinhan Pay (formerly Shinhan Pay) was launched by Shinhan Financial Group in South Korea in April 2021. It is a mobile payment app that allows users to make P2P and in-store payments. Shinhan Bank customers can store their debit and credit cards in the app to initiate payments.

Leading South Korea Cards and Payments Players, 2023

Leading South Korea Cards and Payments Players, 2023

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South Korea Cards and Payments Market – Latest Developments

  • Ecommerce has registered robust growth in the country. To capitalize, international brands are entering this space. In June 2023, YouTube launched its first official online shopping channel in South Korea. Meanwhile, in July 2022 e-commerce platform SSG COM launched SSG Luxury, which offers products such as watches, designer clothes, and jewelry. In addition, online shopping events such as Black Friday and Cyber Monday have supported the growth of e-commerce.
  • Innovative payment solutions are being launched in South Korea. In September 2023, Shinhan Bank introduced biometric ATMs in the country. This enables customers to access ATM services such as cash withdrawals, account enquiries, and account transfers using facial recognition without the need for payment cards. To use this service, customers need to register their facial biometrics via the Shinhan Bank app or in a physical branch.

Segments Covered in the Report

South Korea Cards and Payments Instruments Outlook (Value, $ Billion, 2019-2027)

  • Cash
  • Cards
  • Credit Transfers
  • Mobile Wallets
  • Direct Debits
  • Cheques

South Korea Cards and Payments Market Segments Outlook (Value, $ Billion, 2019-2027)

  • Card-Based Payments
  • E-commerce Payments
  • Alternative Payments
  • P2P Payments
  • In-Store Payments
  • Mobile Payments

Scope

This report provides:

  • Current and forecast values for each market in the South Korean cards and payments industry including debit and credit cards.
  • Detailed insights into payment instruments including cards, credit transfers, cheques, and direct debits. It also includes an overview of the country’s key alternative payment instruments.
  • E-commerce market analysis.
  • Analysis of various market drivers and regulations governing the South Korean cards and payments industry.
  • Detailed analysis of strategies adopted by banks and other institutions to market debit and credit cards.
  • Comprehensive analysis of consumer attitudes and buying preferences for cards.
  • The competitive landscape of the South Korean cards and payments industry.

Reasons to Buy

  • Make strategic business decisions, using top-level historic and forecast market data, related to the South Korean cards and payments industry and each market within it.
  • Understand the key market trends and growth opportunities in the South Korean cards and payments industry.
  • Assess the competitive dynamics in the South Korean cards and payments industry.
  • Gain insights into marketing strategies used for various card types in South Korea.
  • Gain insights into key regulations governing the South Korean cards and payments industry.

CD/ATM Network
Electronic Banking System (EBS)
NongHyup Bank
Shinhan Card
KB Kookmin Card
Woori Bank
Hana Financial Group
Samsung Card
Hyundai Card
Visa
Mastercard
China UnionPay
JCB
American Express
Naver Pay
Samsung Pay
Smile Pay
KakaoPay
LG Pay
Toss
L.PAY
SK pay
PayPal
PAYCO
Shinhan Play

Table of Contents

Market Overview

Payment Instruments

Card-Based Payments

Ecommerce Payments

In-Store Payments

Buy Now Pay Later

Mobile Payments

P2P Payments

Bill Payments

Alternative Payments

Payment Innovations

Job Analysis

Payment Infrastructure and Regulation

Appendix

Frequently asked questions

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