China’s UnionPay and Korea’s Danal to launch crypto-supporting digital card

Major financial services corporation China UnionPay, an analog to card providers like Visa and Mastercard, has partnered with the South Korean payment provider Danal to launch a cryptocurrency-supporting digital card.

Danal’s crypto wallet Paycoin and its crypto token of the same name will be the interface for the new, prepaid mobile card. Paycoin has indicated that users will be able to use both the card and Paycoin to pay for goods and services at over 30 million UnionPay merchants across 179 countries and regions. 

Danal’s PayCoin is a blockchain-based asset that has been in circulation since 2019. It has a reported 760,000 registered users, with Gdac, Upbit, Huobi Korea, Liquid and Coinone as some of the more prominent exchanges listing it. For now, PayCoin’s largest user base is in South Korea, although the company has its sights on global outreach.

In a statement to South China Morning Post, Danal CEO Park Sang Man highlighted the forthcoming card’s benefits for foreign exchange and payments overseas. The UnionPay-Danal card will support top-ups and payments in both fiat currency and crypto.

News of the new UnionPay card comes despite China’s much-advertised roadmap for a central bank-backed digital currency, and alternately ambivalent or hostile stance toward private cryptocurrencies.