The Coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) outbreak, dubbed COVID-19, is first and foremost a human tragedy, affecting millions of people globally. The contagious Coronavirus, which broke out at the close of 2019, has led to a medical emergency across the world, with the World Health Organization officially declaring the novel Coronavirus a pandemic on March 11, 2020.
Anti-government protests and the US-China trade war shrunk the country’s economy by 1.2% in 2019 - the first contraction in 10 years. The battered economy will further plunge due to the effects of the Coronavirus outbreak.
Amid growing political unrest and the outbreak of the pandemic, retail sales in Hong Kong recorded a huge 44% year-on-year decline in February 2020. Sales of luxury goods such as jewelry, watches, and expensive gifts decreased by 79% during the same period, as consumers are deferring such purchases until the situation improves.
This report focuses on the impact of the coronavirus outbreak on both the economyand the cards and payments industry in Hong Kong. Based on our proprietary datasets, the snapshotprovides a detailed comparison between pre-COVID-19 forecasts andrevised forecasts of total payment card, debit card, and credit and charge card transactions by value and volume. It also offers information on measures taken by the government to combat coronavirus.
- The pandemic is set to have a severe impact on the country’s tourism and retail industries. Tourism alone accounts for 4.5% of the country’s GDP and employs around 260,000 individuals. Due to the outbreak, tourist arrivals decreased by 96.4% in February 2020 compared to February 2019, while visitors from the Chinese mainland decreased by 97.8%.
- Due to the growing number of active cases, leading banks such as HSBC and Standard Chartered have closed branches, reduced their banking hours, and are taking strict precautionary measures while dealing with customers. Banks are also increasingly promoting their digital banking channels to reduce branch visits. Standard Chartered is offering a refund on service fees for local fund transfers made through the bank’s online banking channel.
- Online spending is surging as wary consumers are staying at home and using online channels to purchase goods. HKTVmall, a Hong Kong-based e-commerce platform, reported a 165% increase in the number of orders in February 2020 compared to February 2019. The online rush is expected to benefit popular online payment tools such as AlipayHK, WeChat Pay, and PayPal.
Reasons To Buy
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- Receive a comprehensive insight into payments market in Hong Kong.