PayFort adds Egypt's Meeza card to its gateway

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Online payments technology provider PayFort says its gateway is now accepting payments from Egypt's new national Meeza debit card scheme through the Central Bank of Egypt.

Merchants using PayFort, a Dubai-based company owned by Amazon, will be able to take part in the financial inclusion initiative that resulted in the Meeza card from the Egyptian government and its attempt to promote a cashless society and promote online payments.

“Despite the fast growth in card services, many countries in our region still have a high rate of cash dependency and a low penetration of credit card usage,” Omar Soudodi, managing director of PayFort, said in a Monday press release. “The Meeza card is one of the ways in which the Egyptian government is helping to reduce dependency on cash, opening up the country’s electronic payments infrastructure to millions of citizens throughout the country.”

The card will allow citizens to receive and make payments electronically and pay their bills via ATMs and at government departments. Debit cards are often not enabled for e-commerce use by issuers in Egypt, but all Meeza cardholders will be able to use their card to pay online via PayFort’s payment gateway in partnership with Commercial International Bank, Egypt’s largest private sector bank.

“The Meeza card initiative will put a new electronic payment capability in the hands of many people that do not typically use credit or debit cards all over Egypt,” Moataz Mohi, PayFort's Egypt country manager, said in the release.

The arrival of the new national debit card will help "drive Egypt’s cashless society agenda and dramatically increase participation in the government’s electronic payment systems," Mohi added.

PayFort says it has supported a number of major initiatives across the region to reduce dependence on cash and boost electronic payments. The company successfully integrated its payment gateway with the Saudi Payment Network’s Mada national debit card and with accounts established through the national electronic bill payment service provider in Saudi Arabia.

Two years ago, PayFort strengthened its online and mobile POS payments security services for the Arab world through an arrangement with Mastercard for fraud screening and transaction routing.

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Payment processing Debit cards Online payments Egypt