87 billion euros in non-cash payments made in Latvia during first half of 2020

There were 265.1 million non-cash payments made by customers, totalling 87.0 billion euros, in the first half of 2020 according to data released by the Latvian central bank (LB) on August 25. This averages 1.5 million payments worth 477.9 million euro per day.

The total volume of non-cash payments made by customers decreased by 3.3%, but the total value of the payments decreased by 14.7% in comparison with the second half of 2019.

"In the summer months, economic activity improved and the value of card payments increased; in the first half of the year overall, however, the value of card payments – the most popular type of payment with the general public – declined for the first time due to the crisis caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Tourism was hit particularly hard by the COVID-19 pandemic, as evidenced by a more than 30% decline in the value of card payments made in other currencies, and an almost 40% fall in the volume of card payments made at terminals abroad," said Edīte Gailiša, LB's payment expert.

The most popular customer non-cash payments were card payments and customer credit transfers, constituting 64.9% and 33.9% of the total volume of non-cash payments respectively.

To ensure card payments, 2.2 million payment cards were issued by the Latvian payment service providers as at the end of the first half of 2020 (1.2 cards per capita on average), and most of them were cards with a debit function.

41,700  points of sale (POSs) and 912 ATMs were available to the public. At the end of the first half of 2020, the number of customer payment accounts opened by the Latvian payment service providers totalled 3.3 million or 1.7 payment accounts per capita on average.

8.9 million instant payments amounting to 1.9 billion euro were processed in the first half of 2020.

 A detailed report on the operation of interbank payment systems, development of payment instruments and other areas vital for non-cash payments is available on Latvijas Banka's website: https://www.bank.lv/en/statistics/stat-data/payment-systems-statistics.

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