Turkish consumers have most bank cards across Europe

Turkish consumers have most bank cards across Europe

Turkish consumers have most bank cards across Europe The number of banking cards surpassed 171 million in Turkey in 2015, a 15 percent increase from the previous year, making the country the largest card-carrying market in Europe, the Interbank Card Center (BKM) has said in a written statement.

“The number of payments through cards grew by 15 percent in 2015 compared to the previous year. We saw around 14 percent growth in payments with credit cards and 28 percent in debit cards. These figures represent huge improvements on the road of becoming a cashless society,” said BKM General Manager Soner Canko. 

He noted Turkey was tops in Europe in terms of the number of banking cards, reaching over 171 million cards. 

The transaction volume with banking cards, both debit cards and credit cards, surpassed 1 trillion Turkish Liras in 2015 for the first time. Some 526 billion liras of these transactions were made by credit cards while the remaining 501 billion liras was via debit cards. 

A total of 5 billion banking transactions were made through cards in 2015, according to the BKM statement.

The share of payments through cards increased from 28 percent to 39 percent in the last five years. 

The highest number of daily transactions was made on July 16, 2015, the eve of the Eid Ramadan, with around 10.3 million transactions, said Canko. 

Another interesting record was broken between 5:00 p.m.-5:59 p.m. on Feb. 14, 2015, Valentine’s Day, as around 1 million transactions were made in only one hour, he added. 

Some 11 percent of the total card payments were made in internet shopping in 2015. These payments constituted around 32 percent of all transactions in value, according to the statement. 

A new electronic card payment clearing system, dubbed “TROY,” will be operational from April 1, said the statement. 

Canko said the TROY payment system would appeal to those who still choose cash because the fee for using the card will be lower than that charged by the international card networks. In this way, the system will lead to more savings and greater innovation.

The system will be managed by the BKM card center but banks will be able to choose the national system or another.