Tencent Holdings has joined with Tokyo-based social app Line to offer mobile payment services for local small retailers which will appeal to the recent influx of Chinese tourists.
Line Pay and WeChat Pay will offer an integrated system for local small and medium sized merchants so that shoppers can pay through their mobile phones, according to a joint statement on Tuesday.
Business owners will be able to charge from both Line and WeChat users through one unified barcode.
Line says it aims to improve efficiency as well as help small stores that have struggled to tap into the Chinese tourism boom.
According to Japanese government data about 7.35 million Chinese visited Japan last year, triple the number from three years earlier.
The partnership however faces competition from Alibaba’s payment affiliate Ant Financial’s ambitious overseas expansion plans.
The Chinese e-commerce giant’s payments affiliate Alipay teamed with Yahoo Japan in September and aims to work closer with regional banks in Japan to promote its payment platform.
Both Alibaba and Tencent are leveraging the user base of Chinese consumers to extend their services to overseas markets.
WeChat Pay claims it has seen six-fold year-on-year increase in the number of transactions in Japan in June 2018. It is already connecting with 49 overseas markets and regions to allow Chinese consumers to pay with renminbi.
Alipay is also working with Kakao Pay in Korea to allow Chinese travelers in Korea to pay with Alipay.