Alipay Reduced Fees for SMEs by Nearly $786M in Past Six Months

Leading Chinese third-party mobile and online payment platform Alipay released new data on Monday claiming that it has reduced the operating costs of small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs) by nearly 5 billion yuan ($785.7 million) in the past six months.

In order to continuously help the real economy and further reduce operating costs for SMEs, the People’s Bank of China and three other government ministries issued a notice in 2021 on reducing the payment fees of these businesses. Alipay, which is operated by Chinese tech giant Alibaba, took the lead in responding and implementing the fee reduction policy two months in advance. The fee reduction was carried out through measures such as discounted online payment service fees and free cash withdrawal of money collection codes. This is the first time Alipay has disclosed the data of fee reduction in the past six months.

According to Alipay, from August 1, 2021, for SMEs and individual industrial and commercial households that meet the regulations issued by China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT), the online payment service fee on the Alipay platform will be reduced by 10%, and measures such as free cash withdrawal of collection codes will continue. A number of profit-making measures will last until September 30, 2024.

Alipay has continuously introduced measures to reduce the operating costs of SMEs. The collection code, for example, is a common tool for such businesses, while free cash withdrawals can effectively reduce their operating costs.

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Alipay has supported free withdrawals of cash since it launched the money collection code, while no additional application is required for users. At the end of 2017, Alipay announced that it would extend the cash withdrawal of the collection code for three years, free of charge. In March, 2021, Alipay announced for the second time that the cash withdrawal of the collection code would be extended free of charge for another three years. In June 2021, the company announced the extension of the free period for the third time. In February, 2022, it said that regardless of whether users upgrade their collection code to”Personal Business Collection Code” according to the regulations, they can continue enjoying rights and interests such as free cash withdrawal of the collection code and the guarantee of return and refunds (if a user’s QR code is stolen, he or she can still recover all the transacted money).