The number of EMV payment cards in global circulation had rocketed more than 40 per cent year on year by the end of 2015, new statistics from EMVCo have revealed.
There were 4.8 billion ‘chip-and-pin’ cards when the data was collected, and 35.8 per cent of card-present transactions used the technology over the 12-month period – jumping from 32 per cent in 2014.
According to the figures, the largest increase in circulation occurred in Europe Zone 2, which covers 17 countries across Eurasia, including Russia, Ukraine, Macedonia, Kyrgyzstan and Turkmenistan. The region’s chip card adoption rate jumped to 52.3 per cent of cards issued, from 40.4 per cent, a rise of nearly a third.
Meanwhile, Canada, Latin America and the Caribbean saw adoption rates climb nearly a fifth from 59.5 to 71.7 per cent of cards issued. Africa and the Middle East recorded a 61.2 per cent adoption rate, while the Asia Pacific market is slightly less mature at 32.7 per cent of cards issued.
Europe Zone 1, which includes the UK, France and more than 30 other European nations, remained the region with the highest penetration of EMV technology with a slight increase from 83.5 to 84.3 per cent of cards issued.
While figures weren’t provided for the US, EMVCo said the nation’s transition to chip cards gained momentum last year; a trend that has continued in the first half of 2016.
Recent statistics from MasterCard showed that 70 per cent of branded consumer credit cards the company has issued in the country now have chips. This figure is 58 per cent higher than on October 1 2015, which was when liability for certain instances of in-store card fraud shifted from issuers to merchants if the business had failed to upgrade to EMV-ready technologies.
“The global adoption of the EMV specifications is imperative to the development of a more secure and interoperable payments industry,” claimed Mike Matan, current chair of the EMVCo Executive Committee.
Mr Matan also encouraged stakeholders across the payments ecosystem to collaborate with EMVCo to help develop and evolve future EMV specifications.
Andy Brown, Marketing Director Payments at NCR Corporation, has nearly 30 years’ experience in e-payment systems both from the delivery and support of systems in the Far East and Europe and in the product management and marketing perspectives. Based in the UK, Andy is responsible for the marketing for NCR’s payments solutions.