Mobile payment vitalizes small and micro-businesses

(Photo/Zhang Guorong)

Driven by mobile payment, China’s small and micro-businesses currently show great vitality and potential, continuing to fuel economic growth.

A report released on Aug. 6 suggests that in the first half of 2019, 90 percent of street vendors saw a growth in sales after they introduced mobile payment options.

Frequency of consumption at market stalls increased by 30 percent, and sales rose by 2.5 percent, said the report.

These free digital payment tools reduce trading time and operating costs for the vendors. Alipay, a mobile and online payment platform, plans to cut total costs of at least 50 billion yuan for owners of small businesses in the next three years.

Alipay also introduced online payment discounts and enabled users to borrow loans on the platform to stimulate consumption.

Mobile payment allows the positive influence of small businesses to be recognized within the national economy, said Yu Fenghui, an adjunct professor with Huazhong University of Science and Technology.

China has a total of 100 million small and micro-businesses. They consolidate the foundation of national economic development as a part of the private economy, which contributes to over 60 percent of GDP.

Yu said it is essential to provide more digital business tools to cut costs and optimize operation for vendors so that they can play a more significant role in the digital economy.

570 million people in China now use their mobile phones to pay, 80 percent of whom pay by scanning two-dimensional barcodes, according to a report released by China UnionPay in January.