SEOUL– South Korea’s central bank said Friday that it has picked four more companies for its coinless society project in the latest move aimed at enhancing convenience for ordinary people.
Under the project that began in April, consumers can deposit small change left from purchases of goods into prepaid mobile cards that can be used at convenience stores, discount stores and department stores, according to the Bank of Korea (BOK).
It means that consumers won’t have to carry coins in their pockets after making cash payments.
The four new companies include GS25, a South Korean convenience store chain, and three other prepaid card operators.
Existing partners in the project include CU, a major South Korean convenience store chain; Seven Eleven; E-Mart, the country’s largest discount store outlet by sales; Lotte Mart; and Lotte Department Store.
In July, the number of deposits came to 34,000 and the value of deposits were tallied at 6.48 million won (US$5,800) a day on average, according to the BOK.
The project could lower the cost of producing coins, though the BOK said the outcome of the experiment remains to be seen. Last year, South Korea spent 53.7 billion won in producing new coins.
Source: Yonhap News Agency