Concerns over the country’s slowing economy may be overstated, new payment card spending data suggest.

Credit card spending in India rose 28% in fiscal 2012 ended March 31, to 960 billion rupees (US$17.8 billion or 13.8 billion euros) from 750 billion rupees the previous fiscal year, according to the Reserve Bank of India data. Debit card spending grew by 39.5%, to 530 billion rupees from 380 million rupees.

An increase in point-of-sale terminals in the country has encouraged the rise of plastic card use, notes Mrinalini Manral, a banking analyst based in Mumbai, tells PaymentsSource.

“The increase in card spending also reflects high level of confidence among consumers in the last fiscal year,” Manral says.

But the trend may be temporary because consumer confidence is dropping, she says.

Punjab National Bank contends banks targeting wealthy consumers more actively and offering promotions and rewards programs also is pushing the use of credit cards, a spokesperson for the Gurgaon-based issuer tells PaymentsSource.

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