This year has seen a significant surge in demand for digital payment solutions in the UAE, with the total transaction value within the digital payments market anticipated to reach $29.75 billion, a senior official said.

“As consumers increasingly adopt digital wallets, credit/debit cards, and buy-now-pay-later solutions, they are contributing to the momentum towards a cashless society, aligning with global trends,” Khaled Al-Ahli, ME executive director at Crealogix, told Khaleej Times in an interview.

Current trends in the UAE’s digital payment sector show a sustained preference for credit cards and digital wallets, especially for online transactions. This is in line with the expanding e-commerce sector. Furthermore, payment options like Buy Now Pay Later are expected to gain more popularity. The digital payments market in the MENA region is projected to grow to $9 billion by 2028, a 124% increase from 2021, highlighting the region’s rapid shift towards a cashless economy driven by convenience and accessibility.

The UAE has positioned itself as a regional leader in digital banking by embracing advanced technologies such as blockchain, artificial intelligence (AI), and machine learning. These technologies are being leveraged by local banks to streamline operations, enhance customer experiences, and make informed decisions. This digital transformation, paired with robust governance and resilience-building efforts, has prepared the UAE’s financial sector for sustained growth. “The widespread adoption of cashless and contactless payment methods, along with digital wallets, highlights the sector’s focus on prioritizing customer experiences,” Al-Ahli said.

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