JCB cards are now accepted at the Bank of Bhutan Ltd (BOBL)’s nationwide merchant network following the agreement between JCB International Co (JCBI) and Bhutan’s first and largest scale commercial bank.
Bhutan is popular destination for people in Asia Pacific. According to Tourism Council of Bhutan, over 150,000 travelers visited the country in 2015, which has more than tripled over the past 5 years.
Most of the travelers are from regional countries in Asia, where JCBI focuses on for its business. BOBL, established in 1968, is the first bank of the country and currently has about 45 branches throughout Bhutan.
With this launch, JCB cards are accepted at more than 480 locations and it covers 90% of POS terminals and ATMs in the market.
“This year is the 30th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Bhutan and Japan and it is my pleasure to announce the launch of business cooperation of BOBL and JCB in such a historic year,” said JCBI Deputy President Kimihisa Imada.
South Asia is an emerging market and Bhutan is located in the middle of East Asia, Southeast Asia, and South Asia.
“Through the bank’s nationwide merchant network, we can meet JCB cardmember demand while travelling and sightseeing in Bhutan, especially cardmembers from neighbor countries, such as China, Bangladesh, and Thailand, which have about 13 million cardmembers,” Imada added.
Pema N Nadik, Chief Executive Officer of BOBL, said the introduction of JCB card acceptance has been long awaited given the popularity of Bhutan as a destination for Japanese travelers.
“With JCB cards now being accepted in Bhutan through the network of Bank of Bhutan’s ATM and POS terminals, visitors holding JCB cards have the option of making payments securely through this payment channel,” Nadik said.
Bank of Bhutan is the only bank in Bhutan which accepts international Cards at point-of-sale (PoS), ATM and online-through payment gateway besides issuing debit, prepaid and credit cards.
Bank of Bhutan has now become principal member of JCB International Co Ltd and has started accepting any cards issued under JCB brand at Bank of Bhutan POS and ATM terminals, in addition to Visa, MasterCard and all domestic Banks.
Bank of Bhutan currently has 82 ATMs and more than 400 PoS terminals across the country. Bank of Bhutan is into acquiring business since 2010 after getting principal membership of Visa and MasterCard.
JCB is a major global payments brand and a leading payment card issuer and acquirer in Japan. JCB launched its card business in Japan in 1961 and began expanding worldwide in 1981.
Its acceptance network includes about 31 million merchants and over a million cash advance locations in 190 countries and territories. JCB cards are now issued in 21 countries and territories, with more than 95 million card members. – BusinessNewsAsia.com