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Middle Eastern and African shoppers are progressively adopting online payments, even post-COVID-19: new yStats.com report.

The latest publication from Hamburg-based desk research company yStats.com titled “Middle East and Africa Online Payment Methods 2022” shares insights into the online payment methods market in the Middle East and Africa amid and post the COVID-19 health crisis, analyzing and summarizing the important figures, forecasts, and trends. The publication reveals that in the Middle East and Africa, new emerging payment methods such as digital wallets, gained momentum.


Electronic payments globally continue to gain momentum, even post-pandemic

According to findings in the new yStats.com report, the online payments industry worldwide continues to progress, initially driven by the increased digital payment adoption throughout the pandemic. Common payment methods remain mostly card-based, with debit and credit cards ranking among the most preferred payment methods when shopping online. Another payment method gaining momentum currently globally is digital wallet as more and more consumers are using it to pay for their purchases online. Due to the growing use of digital wallets, online merchants are also adjusting their offered payment methods, with almost half of all E-Commerce companies already accepting digital wallets as payment methods and around one third planning to expand their digital wallet adoption in the future.


Consumers in the Middle East and Africa continue to adopt digital payments, overcoming major barriers

The digital payment industry in the MEA region was already growing prior to the onset of the pandemic and its growth has been accelerated by the health crisis. When looking at the different regions in Africa during the pandemic, Eastern Africa displayed the highest and Northern Africa the lowest mobile money transaction volume in 2021, implying a big discrepancy in digital payment adoption throughout the different regions in Africa, as detailed in the yStats.com report. Whereas, when compared to the traditional banking sector, the mobile money sector in Africa has drastically improved accessibility and ease of use for its consumers, though lack of knowledge and relevance persist as the main barriers for mobile money account ownership in this region. In the Middle East, card and digital wallets are growing in use among online shoppers.


Banking sector is adjusting to the changing consumer preferences

As the consumers are increasingly opting for online payment methods, banking is also shifting towards the digital payment trend. Over one third of surveyed banking executives in the MEA region stated their highest priority for the upcoming years is to master digital marketing to improve their digital presence for consumers. Another approximate two thirds expect digital wallets to be among the most preferred payment methods of consumers in their respected markets in a few years.