EghtesadOnline: Shaparak, the main payment settlement network in Iran, processed 2.92 billion transactions worth 4,875.12 trillion rials ($16.25 billion) in the last calendar month to Sept. 21.
Compared to the month before, it was up 0.82% and 2.23% in volume and value, respectively, according to the monthly report published on Shaparak website.
The transactional value rose 94.5% compared to the same period last year when 2.30 billion transactions worth 2,505.36 trillion rials ($8.35b) were processed. In volume terms it showed 27.59% growth on an annualized basis.
The report attributed the surge in the value of transactions mostly to galloping inflation. As for other factors, Shaparak referred to the increasing number of receiving instruments, debit cards plus the growing tendency to use other payment methods instead of cash.
After adjusting for inflation, the real value of transactions fell 1.29% on a monthly basis. Accordingly, the real value of transactions rose 44.73% compared to the same period last year.
As per data released by the Statistical Center of Iran, the average goods and services Consumer Price Index in the 12-month period ending Sept. 21, increased by 26% compared with the corresponding period last year.
Internet, cellphone and point of sale (POS) devices are the three main payment gateways covered in the Shaparak report.
The number of instruments for processing payments showed 0.88% increase overall compared to a month earlier, reaching a total of 11.48 million.
With the biggest contribution to growth, the number of internet payment gateways and mobile instruments increased 1.35% and 1.17%, respectively. Reaching 8.72 million, POS devices in shops rose 0.76% in the period.
As is usually the case, POS devices topped the list of instruments with the biggest market share at 75.98%. This was followed by mobile instruments with 12.18% and online payment gateways 11.84% share.
Higher number of POS devices is mainly due to their larger spread compared to other devices as well as their use without the need for supplementary devices such as PC or cellphone, which may not always be accessible.
Processing more than 2.62 billion transactions worth 4,099.84 trillion rials ($13.66b), POS devices accounted for 89.87% of the total number of transactions. Second were online gateways accounting for 6.16% of the total transactions followed by mobile instruments at 3.97%.
In terms of services offered by Shaparak, it said in the month under review, 86.99% of the transactions were conducted for “buying goods and services. “Buying cellphone recharges and paying bills” was second accounting for 8.30% of the services and 4.71% of the transactions for “checking account balances.”
There were 1,891 payment instruments per 10,000 adults (above 18 years old) in the month. POS terminals held the lion's share with 1,436 instruments per 10,000 adults. Online gateways had the lowest penetration rate with 223 instruments per 10,000 adults.
Tehran Province topped the list of provinces with the highest number of POS terminals. There were 1.81 million active POS devices in the sprawling metropolis, indicating 0.73% rise compared to the earlier month.
This was followed by Khorasan Razavi with 678,531 and Isfahan with 607,491 devices. Ilam Province had the lowest number of POS devices at 61,960.