70% of Payment Cards Worldwide Now Have a Chip

70% of Payment Cards Worldwide Now Have a Chip

May 17, 2017         Written By John H. Oldshue

70% of all payment cards now have a smartchip, according to a new report from the International Card Manufacturers Association. In 2016, there were 5.5 billion chipped cards worldwide, up 2.8% versus year-ago levels.

The ICMA cites America’s transition to EMV technology as one of the driving forces in the chip card industry. Chipped cards yielded $5.2 billion in revenue for manufacturers in 2016, up 7.2% from 2015. This includes debit cards, credit cards, ATM cards and prepaid cards.

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There were 4.3 billion closed loop gift cards manufactured worldwide. These are cards that can only used at one store. Closed loop gift cards created $325 million in revenue for manufacturers in 2016. The ICMA predicts some fluctuations in the market due to the prevalence of digital gift cards, but “they are not expected to dramatically curtail demand for plastic gift cards.”

The ICMA manufactures approximately 35.4 billion cards annually, including healthcare cards, ID cards, phone cards and transit cards. Their research indicates that government/health cards, transportation cards, financial cards, SIM cards, gift cards and payment cards are among the fastest growing markets globally.

The Asia Pacific region ranked first for card production, with 14.15 billion cards made across all verticals. North America ranked second, manufacturing 9.31 billion cards.

The information contained within this article was accurate as of May 17, 2017. For up-to-date
information on any of the terms, cards or offers mentioned above, visit the issuer's website.


About John H. Oldshue

John Oldshue is the creator of LowCards.com. He worked for over 15 years in television and won an Emmy award for his reporting. He covers credit card rate issues for LowCards.com.
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