08.08.2022, 13:54

ECO-FRIENDLY payment initiative launched by Visa

Visa last week announced the launch of Eco Benefits in Asia-Pacific. It is a suite of sustainability-focused solutions that will help Visa cardholders across the region better understand the environmental impact of their day-to-day payments.

Banks that sign up for Eco Benefits will be able to offer these solutions to their Visa cardholders and meet the growing demand for sustainable financial services. According to a new Visa/YouGov survey, 66 per cent of consumers in Asia-Pacific expect their bank to offer eco-friendly payment solutions. Over half (52 per cent) would switch banks in order to access a product or service that helps them understand the carbon footprint of their spending.

In Vietnam, Eco Benefits aligns with the National Green Growth Strategy for 2011-2030 by promoting greener lifestyles and sustainable production. The new product is also in line with the State Bank of Vietnam’s scheme on green bank development by promoting greener financial services and more sustainable habits among clients.

“Vietnamese people are growing increasingly conscious of the plight of our environment and are keen to adapt,” said Dang Tuyet Dung, Visa country manager for Vietnam and Laos. “Visa Eco Benefits will meet a substantial need by empowering consumers to cut their environmental footprint in ways they could never before. Our bank and fintech partners can now add these sustainability features to existing Visa cards. Eco Benefits is another way that Visa is expanding our network beyond payment transactions to deliver more insights to our partners and their customers.”

With Visa Eco Benefits, customers can calculate the carbon footprint generated by their transactions, and access options for carbon offsetting or charitable donations from their bank’s website or app. At the same time, cardholders can also access personalised tips and education on sustainable consumption. Visa Eco Benefits are physical payment cards made from sustainable materials.

Visa Eco Benefits is a continuation of Visa’s global aspiration to be a climate-positive company, using its products, services, data, network, and brand to drive sustainable commerce and support the transition to a low-carbon economy. In 2021, Visa announced a pledge to reach net-zero emissions by 2040, 10 years ahead of the Paris Climate Agreement goal.

Along with promoting sustainable development, Visa also assists consumers and businesses in Vietnam to extend their reach to a digital economy. According to Visa’s Consumer Payment Attitudes 2021 study, over half of Vietnamese consumers now regularly shop online and expect to be able to pay by card or mobile even in small physical stores.

“As the architect of many of the solutions enabling this change, Visa is leveraging its world-leading digital expertise to make sure this transformation is inclusive and equitable,” said Dung. “We believe the digital economy will create global prosperity because economies that include everyone will uplift them everywhere.”

To facilitate the goal, Visa is heavily invested in creating an ecosystem of services and technologies to empower users with secure, innovative transactions fitting their needs. The Visa Acceptance Fast Track initiative helps small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) set up digital payment capabilities in a matter of minutes. The programme allows SMEs to avail themselves of Visa’s leading digital expertise with minimal investment.

Meanwhile, Visa has also launched a new partner programme Visa Ready for buy now, pay later tech companies that would like to have their own solution to reach Visa’s vast network of clients, helping boost their visibility.

For the past 10 years, Visa has been promoting financial literacy among students and offering its repository of practical business skills to would-be entrepreneurs. Through the Where You Shop Matters campaign, Visa has also been supporting SMEs to digitalise their operations so that they can thrive.

In addition, Visa is promoting equitable access to finance and entrepreneurship for women via the Visa Vietnam She’s Next Program. Three winners out of 10 finalists of women entrepreneurs were selected in July to receive a $10,000 grant, plus IFundWomen coaching membership to support the growth of their small businesses.

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