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A comprehensive overview of the cards, payments and consumer banking market in Paraguay, with clearsighted commentary backed by historic and forecast data.
Digital payments are slowly gaining ground on cash, boosted by the fact that the number of POS terminals more than doubled between 2013 and 2019.
We estimate that one in ten card transactions will be contactless in 2020, while debit card purchase transactions will reach over half of total debit card transactions during the following year.
Two-thirds of the population are mobile money users. B2C e-commerce transaction value will reach 2.1 percent of total household purchases in 2020, versus 0.4 percent in 2013.
How stakeholders are boosting the payments system.
Why payment and collection companies are pivotal.
The effects the APR cap in Paraguay.
Why debit card numbers have risen sharply.
How Paraguay e-commerce has evolved.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Demographics and the economy
Argentina cards market
Key retail banks and issuers
Acquiring and processing
Regulatory and other Argentina cards market information
Appendices: Card Payments Data
Appendix I: Demographics and the economy
Appendix II: Payments environment
Appendix III: Cards market data
Appendix IV: Mobile payments data
Appendix V: Profit pool
Appendix VI: Card networks
Appendix VII: Key retail banks and issuers
Appendix VIII: Acquirers and processing
Appendix IX: Online acquiring data
Demographics and Economy
Paraguay's population growth has been among the highest in Latin America, averaging 1.45% per year between 2013 and 2019. Paraguay's demographic profile can be characterised as young.
The extensive use of cash provides a significant opportunity for card and electronic-based payments. According to the National Financial Inclusion Strategy, three quarters of workers and retirees were paid in cash in 2017.
According to Paraguay's Payments Chamber (CPMP), there are 3.59 million payment cards in issue as of December 2019, split two to one in favour of debit over credit cards. There is an average of 0.71 payment cards per adult.
Paraguay has one of the lowest bancarization levels in Latin America while, at the same time, possessing a high level of mobile penetration.
With profit per card estimated at $49 in 2019, Paraguay's credit cards market profitability has recovered from the effects of the 2015 law capping annual percentage rates.
Financial institutions in Paraguay issue nine different credit card brands. The largest pair, Visa and Mastercard, account for an estimated 71% of cards in issue and 72% of total billed volume as of December 2019. Debit card usage has seen strong growth, both at the POS and at the ATM.
Key Retail Banks and Issuers
Competition in the retail banking and payment cards market is distributed between a variety of domestic and foreign financial institutions. Foreign retail banks include Banco Itau, BBVA, Banco Sudameris and Banco GNB.
Acquiring and Processing
Despite strong growth, Paraguay's point-of-sale network requires further rapid expansion to increase the use of cards for payments and reduce reliance on cash.
Online purchase volume acquired domestically reached almost $24 million in 2019, representing less than 1% of total cards' purchase volume.
Regulatory and Markets Information
The financial system in Paraguay is regulated by the Banco Central del Paraguay (BCP) through the Banking Superintendence (SIB): their conduct in this respect is governed by the Financial Institutions Act of 1996.
Banco Central del Paraguay
Banco Nacional de Fomento
Club Cerro Porteño
Club Sportivo Luqueño
EMPE Clearing House
Financiera El Comercio
Financiera Paraguayo Japonesa
Instituto Nacional de Cooperativismo
Shopping del Sol
Sol de America
Visión S.A de Finanzas
Reports deliver invaluable market and competitor intelligence on payments cards, e-money, acquiring/processing, retail banking, and consumer credit in Latin America. Analysts and researchers use both primary and secondary source data and conduct in-depth interviews with Latin American industry executives and experts.
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