The two largest mobile payment networks in China want nothing to do with crypto, and they are making this known. The two, Alipay and WeChat Pay, have allegedly sent legal letters to Huobi crypto exchange asking that it take their logos down. At press time, however, Huobi still had the logos on its over-the-counter website. Huobi is reportedly yet to receive the legal documents and is therefore within its right to keep the logos.
According to local media reports, Alipay and WeChat Pay haven’t authorized the use of their logos by Huobi. However, in response, Huobi stated that the logos are not for brand promotion. Rather, the logos just show a payment link, a practice that’s common with other financial firms. The exchange which is the fifth-largest globally stated:
“The logo related to the relevant payment platform is only a way of expressing the payment link and is not used to promote the company’s products or services, which is a common practice in the industry. We understand the relevant the party’s position will strictly follow the relevant provisions on the use of trademarks and strictly check the use.”
On their part, the two payment firms stated that those who transact in cryptocurrencies are liable for punitive measures. These may include limiting the transactional amount or even suspending the account altogether.
The Battle Rages On
Owned by Alibaba and Tencent respectively, Alipay and WeChat Pay are the two dominant mobile payment systems in China. They are so popular that people even use them to tip street musicians. With credit cards not being as popular in China, mobile payments have grown into a $16 trillion industry. WeChat Pay boasts of 900 million active users while Alipay recently hit the one billion users mark globally.
The two firms have tightened measures against crypto transactions recently. This is partly due to the Chinese government’s clampdown on cryptocurrencies. The government has banned ICOs and crypto exchanges from the country. The move aims at protecting the Chinese people from scams which have become wildly popular in the crypto industry.
Despite the clampdown, the Chinese have still found ways to circumvent restrictions and trade cryptocurrencies. China is also home to a many crypto miners due to cheap electricity.
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