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Nought to Five Billion in 17 Years


Media Release
24 July 2006

Nought to Five Billion in 17 Years
EFTPOS payments in New Zealand hit huge milestone

During July the five billionth EFTPOS payment flowed across the Paymark EFTPOS network since the electronic form of payment was introduced in New Zealand in 1989.

Simon Tong, Chief Executive Officer, Paymark, says the volume of electronic payments taking place each day would astound most people.

Key electronic transaction statistics:
- Average number of transactions per day 2 million
- Average number of transactions per second 60
- Peak number of transactions 2,970,000 on Christmas Eve 2004
- Average time for transactions to be processed 0.05 seconds
- Amount of time to reach first billion transactions 9 years
- Amount of time to reach five billion transactions 17 years

“New Zealanders are great adopters of new technology and electronic payments are no exception. It seems amazing to think only 15 years ago it was all cash and cheques. Today over 90% of New Zealanders have a debit card, which places us amongst the highest users in the OECD. It is a mark of the reliability and security of the Paymark EFTPOS network that electronic payments form such an accepted part of day to day life in New Zealand.”

EFTPOS has become the preferred way for New Zealanders to pay for goods and services. Around 60% of all retail transactions in New Zealand now take place electronically. The average value of EFTPOS transactions has decreased over the years, illustrating a willingness to use cards for day-to-day spending.

Mr Tong comments that Paymark expects to see the number of electronic payments continue to increase.

“New Zealanders are using EFTPOS more often and online shopping is becoming more popular. Mobile payments will also be an area of growth. New Zealand was one of the first countries in the world where a mobile phone was used to make a payment from a bank account. Paymark provides infrastructure that enables these services and we are investing to ensure New Zealand continues to have world class electronic payment options that are safe secure and reliable.”

Paymark handles around three quarters of all EFTPOS payment transactions in New Zealand.


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