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Cash is no longer king

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Cash is losing its dominance in Cyprus, mirroring a wider trend in the European Union, where the majority of consumers now prefer using digital payment methods, according to the Central Bank of Cyprus.

In the second half of 2022, Central Bank data disclosed that over two-thirds (68.3%) of transactions in Cyprus were conducted using credit cards, marking a 1.5% increase compared to the first six months of the year.

Cyprus is closely behind the leading countries in the EU for card payments.

Portugal led the bloc with the highest proportion of card payments, accounting for 75.2% of total cashless transactions in the second half of 2022.

Greece followed second with 73%, and Lithuania recorded 71%.

Across the eurozone, the second half of 2022 saw an 8.8% increase in contactless payment transactions, reaching 65.9 billion, with the total value rising by 2.8% to €118.8 trillion.

Card payments constituted 54% of all transactions, while credit transfers, direct debits, and e-money payments accounted for 20%, 16%, and 7%, respectively.

The remaining 2% encompassed cheques, money orders, and other payment services.

Examining annual data for cashless transactions in 2022, the total number of transactions surged by 10.9% to €126.6 billion compared to 2021, with their value increasing by 17.5% to €234.3 trillion.

The figures indicate a clear shift towards digital payment methods in Cyprus and the broader eurozone.