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Belgiums Cards and Payments Industry Emerging Opportunities, Trends, Size, Drivers, Strategies, Products and Competitive Landscape Growth and Share Report

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Albany, NY -- (SBWIRE) -- 10/20/2014 -- Synopsis

The report provides top-level market analysis, information and insights into Belgium's cards and payments industry, including:

Current and forecast values for each category of Belgium's cards and payments industry, including debit cards, credit cards, prepaid cards and charge cards
Comprehensive analysis of the industry’s market attractiveness and future growth areas
Analysis of various market drivers and regulations governing Belgium's cards and payments industry
Detailed analysis of the marketing strategies adopted for selling debit and credit cards used by banks and other institutions in the market
Comprehensive analysis of consumer attitudes and buying preferences for cards
The competitive landscape of Belgium's cards and payments industry

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Executive summary

Belgian card payments registered positive growth during the review period (2009–2013), recording a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 3.30% to reach 39.1 million cards in circulation by the end of 2013. In terms of transaction value, payment cards accounted for EUR121.7 billion (US$161.3 billion) in 2013, after registering a review-period CAGR of 5.95%. The transaction value is expected to grow over the forecast period (2014–2018), at a CAGR of 5.96%. Improvements to banking infrastructure and the installation of point of sale (POS) terminals at merchant outlets were the payment cards instrument’s key growth drivers. In terms of transaction value, debit cards accounted for a market share of 89% in 2013; the highest among payment cards, a situation that is expected to continue over the forecast period. Charge cards accounted for the second-highest position, followed by credit cards, while prepaid cards accounted for the lowest share of 0.2% in terms of transaction value in 2013.

During the review period, card fraud in Belgium declined at a CAGR of -6.85% in terms of transaction value, from EUR28.8 million (US$40.0 million) in 2009 to EUR21.7 million (US$28.8 million) in 2013. One of the main drivers was the implementation of EMV (Europay, MasterCard and Visa) compliance. Belgium was one of the first single euro payments area (SEPA) countries to migrate to chip-embedded cards in 2001, and eradicated traditional magnetic strips completely. Moreover, from 2011, Belgian banks implemented geo-blocking which involves restricting Maestro functions or debit card use without chip-and-PIN verification in European countries. This helped reduce skimming activity and therefore, counterfeit card fraud declined at the highest CAGR of -18.30% of all card fraud types during the review period.

From the second half of 2008, the Belgium economy underwent a financial crisis which impacted consumer lending. In 2009, a switch took place and debit cards became more popular with consumers than credit cards. Although the credit card market grew at a review-period CAGR of 2.09% in terms of number of cards in circulation, it accounted for just 2.8% of Belgian payment cards in 2013. In 2010, all forms of consumer lending began to show signs of recovery, with the exception of non-collateral credits. This was mainly due to the adoption of a conservative approach by credit card issuers, which led to fewer non-collateral loans being issued. Over the forecast period, the Belgian payment cards system is expected to remain dominated by non-credit instruments such as debit and prepaid cards.

In terms of value, a review-period CAGR of 125.61% indicates remarkable growth in mobile payments (m-payments) in Belgium. With rising internet penetration and the adoption of smartphones, m-payments are gaining popularity. During review period, they grew from EUR3.8 million (US$5.3 million) in 2009 to EUR98.9 million (US$131.1 million) in 2013, and are expected to grow significantly at a forecast-period CAGR of 40.11%, to reach EUR703.6 million (US$991.1 million) by 2018. The increasing capabilities of smartphones and a substantial rise in mobile payment apps will further drive market growth. Belfius Bank developed an application called Bancontact/Mister Cash in collaboration with TagTagCity which enabled consumers to make payments with smartphones, tablets, and via quick-response (QR) codes. The app has been in service since July 2013. The emergence of mobile wallets is also contributing to rising adoption rates. French financial service provider BNP Paribas launched a mobile wallet in March 2013 in Belgium in collaboration with Belgian telecom operator Belgacom. The mobile wallet will integrate mobile payments, e-couponing, virtual ticketing and loyalty programs, and users will be able use the application on public transport to check timetables and purchase tickets.

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This report provides a comprehensive analysis of Belgium's cards and payments industry.
It provides current values for Belgium's cards and payments industry for 2013, and forecast figures for 2018.
It details the different economic, infrastructural and business drivers affecting Belgium's cards and payments industry.
It outlines the current regulatory framework in the industry.
It details the marketing strategies used by various banks and other institutions.
It profiles the major banks in Belgium's cards and payments industry.

Reasons to buy

Make strategic business decisions using top-level historic and forecast market data related to Belgium's cards and payments industry and each market within it.
Understand the key market trends and growth opportunities in Belgium's cards and payments industry.
Assess the competitive dynamics in Belgium's cards and payments industry.
Gain insights in to the marketing strategies used for selling various card types in Belgium.
Gain insights into key regulations governing Belgium's cards and payments industry.

Key highlights

Banks have increased their focus on adopting advanced technology to enhance consumers’ banking experience. Banks usually cater to diverse consumer segments including small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), large enterprises, and individual merchants such as plumbers and carpenters, and offer services for making and accepting payments through multiple channels. Since June 2013, KBC-Pay Me and CBC Xengo mobile payment services have been available in KBC Bank NV and CBC Bank branches respectively in Belgium, as part of a sales and marketing alliance between KBC Bank NV, its subsidiary CBC Bank, and Atos Worldline. These two mobile solutions have been developed to target retailers, enabling them to receive payments through smartphones and tablets.

Proton was an electronic purse launched in Belgium in 1996 by Bancontact/Mister Cash for low-value payments such as car parking and vending machines. In 2012, Bancontact/Mister Cash announced that it was to deactivate protons completely from Belgium due to a low service user base. Specially designed prepaid cards such as the MoBiB transport and luncheon cards are now gaining popularity among Belgian consumers. Many payment methods now enable secure low-value payments as an alternative to prepaid cards.

The issuance of EMV-compliant cards and the growth in internet penetration will support the overall security and growth of card transactions respectively. The number of EMV cards in circulation increased from 19.3 million in 2009 to 21.3 million in 2013, at a CAGR of 2.58%. The main driving factor for EMV migration was Belgium’s neighboring countries France and the UK. With EMV compliance in those countries, there was a possibility of fraud migration to Belgium. To combat against increasing fraud, Belgium started implementing EMV compliance in 2001. In Belgium, 100% EMV compliance was achieved by 2012.

The total value of retail sales in Belgium increased from EUR80.1 billion (US$111.3 billion) in 2009 to EUR87.5 billion (US$116.0 billion) in 2013, at a review-period CAGR of 2.22%. Over the forecast period, the value of retail sales is anticipated to increase from EUR89.0 billion (US$120.0 billion) in 2014 to EUR98.3 billion (US$138.5 billion) in 2018, at a CAGR of 2.52%. Despite a decrease in consumer confidence levels following the financial crisis of 2009, the retail industry managed to grow during the review period. Developments such as out-of-town retail parks with exclusive offers and schemes encouraged consumers to spend and revive growth in 2013.

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