Tuesday 20 August 2019 5:04 pm

Whatsapp in talks to launch mobile payments service in Indonesia

Whatsapp is said to be in discussions with several digital payments firms in Indonesia over plans to offer mobile transactions over its platform.

If a deal were reached, it would make Indonesia only the second country worldwide where Whatsapp offers the service.

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The firm is currently awaiting regulatory approval for mobile payments in India, its biggest market by users, following delays due to local data storage rules.


But while in India the service allows peer-to-peer payments, in Indonesia it would only support payments via local digital wallets due to strict regulation over licencing, Reuters reported, citing sources.

The move would allow the Facebook-owned social media site to cash in on the burgeoning e-commerce sector in Indonesia.

It could also become a template for Whatsapp to adopt in emerging markets that have tough regulations against foreign companies setting up digital wallets, the sources said.

Whatsapp is said to be in advanced talks with a string of firms, including ride-hailing app Go-Jek.

The negotiations come after Facebook boss Mark Zuckerberg said Whatsapp will look to roll out mobile payments in “some countries”.

“As Mark has said earlier this year… we are looking to bring digital payments to more countries,” a Facebook spokeswoman told Reuters.

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“WhatsApp is in conversations with financial partners in Indonesia about payments, however the discussions are in early stages and we do not have anything further to share at this stage.”

Chinese social media giant Wechat has enjoyed huge success through its digital payment service, as digital transactions have become the most common payment method in its home country.

Main image credit: Getty

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