Number of credit cards in Morocco rising
At the end of 2011, the number of credit cards in circulation in Morocco rose by 13.6 percent compared to 2010, reaching 8 million cards issued, indicated the latest data by the Interbank Electronic Payment Center (CMI). Just over 85% of the cards (6.9 million) were issued under the brand names of VISA, Mastercard and national brand CMI.
Last year, the number of transactions through credit cards reached 187.5 million for a total value of160.3 billion dirhams. This amount represents a 15.9 percent increase on a yearly basis. In 2010, the number of credit card transactions in the Moroccan market reached 178.3 million, with a total value of 145.9 billion dirhams. Foreign cards totaled only 9.7 million transactions for 14.4 billion dirhams. However, according to CMI, the sustained growth of the Moroccan cards made up for the slight decline in activity for foreign cards.
By type of operation, payments dominated over 93 percent of total operations. Foreign cards accounted for 38.3 percent of the payment value with 5.5 billion dirhams, a slight decline of 1.8 percent compared to 2010.
Regarding withdrawals of cash money, international cards represent 61.7 percent of total ATM transactions in the kingdom with 8.9 billion dirhams, down 0.8 percent compared to 2010. Last year, the network of ATMs continued to expand in the North African nation, with the installation of 480 new terminals. Now, the network includes 5,024 ATMs, an increase of 10.6 percent compared to 2010.
Meanwhile, Moroccan credit cards were used in 272,000 transactions abroad, including withdrawals and payments, for a total of 534.2 million of dirhams, up 30.8 percent over 2010.
In 2011, the total amount of online transactions in Morocco reached a turnover of more than 513 million dirhams. This figure reflects a spurt of 72 percent compared to the turnover recorded in 2010, which amounted to 298 million dirhams. During the past year, some 714,000 e-payment transactions were made, more than double (116 percent) compared with the previous year.