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US Credit card companies struggle in China

July 24, 2012

With a growing middle class, many credit card companies have been looking to take advantage of the Chinese market. However, many have found the country is a difficult place for foreign firms.

With a growing middle class, many credit card companies have been looking to take advantage of the Chinese market. However, many have found the country is a difficult place for foreign firms.

In one recent development, the World Trade Organization stated that the Chinese government illegally forced companies like MasterCard and Visa to pay fees to China-based Union Pay. A WTO panel said in a statement that forcing the firms to use the Chinese firm violated its rules.

Industry experts said that the most recent ruling that was one of the first parts of a long transition to make the market more competitive.

“It’s one more step in a very long process to get greater access for Mastercard and others,” said Dave Carini, managing director at China Maverick Research. “But that process is going to take several years, and at the end of it they will still not have full and open access to the market they would like.”

In other Chinese credit card news, authorities from the Criminal Investigation Bureau recently took suspects into custody for illegally purchasing tickets with stolen credit cards.

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