AlipayHK and GCash today announced the launch of a cross-border remittance service through their a wallet platforms, powerd by cutting-egde blockchain technology developed by Alipay, the online payment platform operated by Ant Financial Services Group(“Ant Financial”,”Ant”). This is the first blockchain-based cross-border digital wallet remittance service globally, offering a fast, secure, convenient, transparent and low-cost way to transfer money directly between individuals in Hong Kong and the Philippines.
Alipay has applied blockchain technology to streamline the remittance process, radically improving the speed of delivery, enhancing transparency of the process and drastically reducing costs while ensuring better security measures when sending money across borders. This service between GCash and AlipayHK will provide round-the-clock, real-time money transfer between Hong Kong and the Philippines at a competitive exchange rate with much lower transaction fees, which will be further waived during an initial three-month trial period. With a few taps through AlipayHK’s mobile phone application,money will be transferred within seconds to a GCash user.
Blockchain technology allows us to change and radically improve the speed and efficiencies for remittance services. Based on the smart contract, once a user submits a remittance application, all network participants including AlipayHK, GCash and Standard Chartered Bank, the first and core partner bank supporting on this initiative, are notified. The segmented procedures of the remittance process can consequently take place in parallel, enabling the verification and execution of the transaction to occur simultaneously. Through the blockchain platform, the sender and receiver are also able to track their money with every step of the way – from when the remittance application stored, shared or uploaded through the blockchain remittance platform is further encrypted with the most advanced protocols to protect the user’s privacy.
“We are very excited to introduce this new remittance solution to our users in Hong Kong, and in particular to the Filipino community in the city,” said Jennifer Tan, CEO of Alipay Payment Services (HK) Limited (APSHK). “What used to be a long process of physically going to a remittance booth, queuing in ling for hours and filling out forms, is now easily and securely done over the mobile phone in just a few seconds. Together with GCash, we aim to provide Filipino expatriates a more convenient, seamless experience to transfer money back home to their families in the Philippines. We will also continue to provide tailor-made solutions for our customers as we aim to enhance their daily lives through our secure and fuss-fee approach.”
Canning Fok, Group Co-Managing Director of CK Hutchison Holdings and Chairman of Alipay Payment Services (HK) Limited said, “This cooperation with GCASH to bring remittance to the Philippines using the new technology is the first step and there are many other places Hong Kong people need to remit money. I’m happy to see that the AlipayHK team is hard at work to expand this service to more people, bringing us closer to our families and friends with a cheaper and quicker solution.
Anthony Thomas, President and CEO of Mynt, the operator of GCash said, “GCash is building a cashless ecosystem to make financial services affordable and accessible to every Filipino as we aim to provide the Philippines’ underserved market with convenient options for load top-up, remittance, and cashless payments for goods and services, among others. This time, in partnership with AlipayHK and Ant Financial, GCash is able to achieve another breakthrough to make sending money to the Philippines easier, more convenient, and more secure for Filipinos abroad. We believe that for overseas Filipinos, sending money home to their family’s GCash mobile wallet will soon be the norm.”
Standard Chartered has been an integral partner in the development of the solution and will provide the underlying banking infrastructure to support this pivotal initiative.