It targets a 30 per cent ratio within four to five years. Saigon Co.op has been collaborating with other companies to deploy a series of new payment services and applications based on tech platforms that offer more convenience and privileges to customers shopping at its over 800 stores, according to Đức.

Many factors have caused this surge in cashless payment like the impact of communications, which has eliminated the “strangeness” consumers used to feel about cashless payments, and the COVID-19 pandemic, which acted as a catalyst in rapidly increasing the use of cashless methods.

Another important factor has been the improved infrastructure for connecting retailers and payment service providers and legal mechanisms to protect people making cashless payments, and users’ increasing trust in the confidentiality and safety of digital payment.

Payment trends in the economy have shifted towards non-cash modes

Trần Vĩnh Tuyến, vice chairman of the city People’s Committee, said, “[Enabling] cashless payment for education and healthcare has yielded positive results. “Students at about 80 per cent of city schools no longer pay their tuition fees in cash since 400 public schools have started collecting tuition via bank transfer.

“Half of the city’s healthcare services allow patients to pay fees cashlessly.”

“The city is on course to build a smart city, so building a cashless society is among its main goals.”

Nguyễn Minh Tâm, deputy CEO of Sacombank, said his bank began to offer cashless payment for education six years ago.

“Collection of tuition fees online is now done at more than 300 schools, and over 200,000 school smart cards [to pay school fees and others] were issued. Cashless payment at these schools has increased by some 10 times.”

To boost cashless payment in the city, on the occasion of Cashless Day on June 16 the State Bank of Vietnam affixed the “cashless payment” label at Co.opmart Cống Quỳnh in District 1, many stalls at An Đông Market in District 5 and a petrol station belonging to Saigon Fuel JSC on Cách Mạng Tháng Tám Street in District 3.