UnionPay

The First Implementation of UnionPay Chip Issuing and Acquiring

Central Asia's largest bank and OpenWay are the first to launch UnionPay chip card issuing and acquiring in the region.

The First Implementation of UnionPay Chip Issuing and Acquiring.jpg

December 22, 2014 - Almaty, Kazkhstan

People's Bank of Kazakhstan (Halyk Bank), the largest bank in Kazakhstan and Central Asia, together with OpenWay, a recognized leader in software for bankcard issuing and acquiring, payment processing, remote banking services and financial transaction routing, have launched issuing and acquiring of UnionPay UICC chip cards.

This is the first project of its kind in Central Asia.

The project to support the issuing of UnionPay chip cards and acquiring at ATMs and POS terminals was completed in just four months. The cards are being issued as UnionPay and Altyn co-branded cards. Altyn is the bank's local payment system. 

"When implementing innovative technology we put our customers first,” says Marat Almenov, the deputy chair of the management board at People's Bank of Kazakhstan. “Considering the growing worldwide popularity of UnionPay and expected demand for its cards, we have introduced the co-branded Altyn UnionPay and Altyn UnionPay Gold cards. These cards meet our customers’ demands and fully comply with the latest international standards for security," explains Mr Almenov.

"For UnionPay – a payment system with ambitions in Central Asia – it is very important to partner with market leaders in order to develop our business. People's Bank of Kazakhstan’s card business is already being managed on the WAY4 processing platform, which has proven highly reliable. We are happy that we have chosen the right partner for this project.” - notes Zhang Chendong, country manager of UnionPay International in Kazakhstan.

Dmitry Dovgal, OpenWay’s deputy director of business development, points out that the swift implementation of the UnionPay smart cards forms a logical link in the chain of numerous other innovative issuing and acquiring projects implemented in partnership with People's Bank of Kazakhstan. 

OpenWay collaborates with UnionPay International in several global markets including issuing and acquiring projects launched on the WAY4 platform in Iceland, Kenya, Russia and Azerbaijan. Implementations are also being carried out in other countries. 

About People's Bank of Kazakhstan (Halyk)

People's Bank of Kazakhstan is one of Kazakhstan's leading financial groups and retail banks with the largest customer base and distribution network in Kazakhstan. The Bank is developing as a universal financial group, offering a broad range of services (banking, insurance, leasing, brokerage, and asset management) to its retail, small and medium enterprises and corporate customers. People's Bank also operates in Russia, Georgia and Kyrgyzstan.

About Union Pay International

UnionPay International (UPI) is a subsidiary focusing on development and support of UnionPay's international business. Its founder is China UnionPay (pinyin: Zhōngguó Yínlián, CUP) – China's payment system. Founded in 2002 by the country's leading banks, its creation was initiated by the State Council and People's Bank of China. Just two years later, the company began working outside China and currently operates in 142 countries.

 

OpenWay and Halyk Bank Provide Kazakhstan with Access to China Union Pay

Increasing trade with China has prompted a new initiative by Halyk Bank which will see the Kazakhstan bank issuing China Union Pay (CUP) cards to its customers. This has become possible thanks to OpenWay’s innovative WAY4 software which is used in Halyk Bank’s processing centre.

This is the first time that CUP cards will have been issued outside China since the CUP was founded in 2002 as China’s national payment system. Currently, there are more than 959 million CUP cards in circulation.

Halyk Bank is the largest full-service commercial bank in the Republic of Kazakhstan and has issued more than 2.6 million international payment cards. This project allows residents of Kazakhstan to withdraw cash and pay for purchases with their CUP cards while they are in China – through a huge network of more than 500,000 point-of-sale (POS) terminals and 70,000 ATMs. They will also be able to use their cards through Halyk Bank’s network of 2,601 POS terminals, 697 cash withdrawal machines (ATMs) and 547 imprinters across Kazakhstan.

This world-beating initiative has been made possible by OpenWay’s WAY4 software which has enabled full interaction with CUP’s systems. The first stage of the OpenWay/Halyk project was the certification of the CUP acquiring system. Now the project has also achieved certification for CUP issuing.

OpenWay is looking forward to working with Halyk Bank and other WAY4 customers and to expanding CUP issuing and acquiring both in Kazakhstan and other countries in Asia, Europe and Americas that have close trade relationships with the Republic of China.

People's Bank of Kazakhstan (Halyk)

People's Bank of Kazakhstan (halykbank.kz) is one of Kazakhstan's leading financial groups and retail banks with the largest customer base and distribution network in Kazakhstan. The Bank is developing as a universal financial group, offering a broad range of services (banking, insurance, leasing, brokerage, and asset management) to its retail, small and medium enterprises and corporate customers. People's Bank also operates in Russia, Georgia and Kyrgyzstan.

 

Union Pay International

UnionPay International (UPI) is a subsidiary focusing on development and support of UnionPay's international business. Its founder is China UnionPay (pinyin: Zhōngguó Yínlián, CUP) – China's payment system. Founded in 2002 by the country's leading banks, its creation was initiated by the State Council and People's Bank of China. Just two years later, the company began working outside China and currently operates in 142 countries.

 

Halyk Bank Launches CUP Acquiring on WAY4

Halyk Bank of Kazakhstan and OpenWay launch WAY4 for acquiring China Union Pay (CUP) cards. This project is expected to further promote trade relations between Kazakhstan and China.

OpenWay's WAY4 solution for acquiring China Union Pay payment cards was implemented in Halyk Savings Bank of Kazakhstan. The solution's implementation and certification were carried out within just three months, sticking closely to Halyk Bank, CUP and OpenWay's initially planned schedule. ATM and POS acquiring of CUP cards were implemented by OpenWay through a new WAY4 CUP Interface module. 

Halyk Bank has been successfully using WAY4 to issue and acquire payment cards for years. Now, CUP's cardholders can pay for goods and services, receive information about their card account balance, and withdraw cash in ATMs through Halyk's payment network in Kazakhstan.

According to Askar Kusainov, Deputy Chairman of JSC Halyk Bank of Kazakhstan, "Successful economic cooperation between Kazakhstan and China requires a developed bank infrastructure that considers the needs of large-scale companies, sole proprietors, and individuals from both countries. We are sure that issuing and acquiring CUP cards in Kazakhstan will promote trade relations based on modern e-commerce, and every market participant will profit from this."

Mr Kevin Francis Wong, CEO of OpenWay Asia, noted: "Implementing projects in Asia is one of OpenWay's top priorities. Kazakhstan's banking market is one of the most technologically developed markets in the world, and we have many years of successful cooperation under our belt. Halyk Bank is one of the market's major participants, and we are proud that Halyk has chosen our WAY4 solutions to develop its retail business. We are sure that the new functionality accessing CUP's "Chinese" cards, which number almost one billion, will guarantee further business development in both Halyk Bank and the Republic of Kazakhstan as a whole".

The next stage of Halyk Bank, CUP and OpenWay's project is a certification for issuing CUP cards. It is going to give Kazakhstan's businessmen and natural persons a convenient means of settlement in China.

Union Pay International

UnionPay International (UPI) is a subsidiary focusing on development and support of UnionPay's international business. Its founder is China UnionPay (pinyin: Zhōngguó Yínlián, CUP) – China's payment system. Founded in 2002 by the country's leading banks, its creation was initiated by the State Council and People's Bank of China. Just two years later, the company began working outside China and currently operates in 142 countries.

 

People's Bank of Kazakhstan (Halyk)

People's Bank of Kazakhstan (halykbank.kz) is one of Kazakhstan's leading financial groups and retail banks with the largest customer base and distribution network in Kazakhstan. The Bank is developing as a universal financial group, offering a broad range of services (banking, insurance, leasing, brokerage, and asset management) to its retail, small and medium enterprises and corporate customers. People's Bank also operates in Russia, Georgia and Kyrgyzstan.