China Tech 101: Alipay
Alipay is China's largest digital wallet and mobile and online payments platform, responsible for over half of all digital transactions in China.








ABOUT Alipay

Alipay is China's largest digital wallet and mobile and online payments platform, responsible for over half of all digital transactions in China.

Founded in 2004, Alipay was first built as Taobao’s payment arm. It has since expanded into a full-fledged financial services company (now Ant Group) with extensive services including large transaction transfer services, credit card bill payments and more.

Alipay’s presence continues to grow both in China and internationally through a wide network of partners. This includes First Data, which enabled Alipay to be a point of sale for over 4 million retail partners in the United States since 2018.

1.3 billion combined with 9 other Ant Group's lcoal e-wallets (updated in 2020)
Everyday transactions in China and high-spending tourists from China
Ecommerce or tourism-related businesses
Chinese and English


There are in general two versions of Alipay - 'Zhifubao (Alipay)' for China nationals/companies, and 'Alipay Global' for foreign businesses.

China-registered companies may sign up for a business account on Zhifubao (Alipay):

1. Create a business account with an email address on Alipay.

Sign up for a business account on Alipay.

2. Verify account with a business license number, a business bank account, ID card of a legal entity. See a preview below.

Chinese nationals may sign up for an individual account on Zhifubao (Alipay):

1. Create an individual account with a mobile number on Alipay.

2. Verify your account by scanning your ID Card.

Foreign businesses may get started by signing up on Alipay Global

1. Creating a business account with an email address on Alipay Global. There are various language settings (English, Spanish, Italian, Russian and French) on the top right corner.

Sign up on Alipay Global

2. Submit your company information for verification. You'll be referred to contact the local team in your country. Alipay Global team usually takes 5-7 business days to respond.

Business Requirements

For businesses interested in Alipay Global, there are two types of payment methods for different stores. Each payment has its own specific business requirements.

QR code payment is recommended for offline stores - requirements below:

Authentic and valid business license (company/individual)

Basic information about your store, such as industry, store name, address, photos (including door and interior photos), contact person and contact information

Online Payment is recommended for online stores - requirements below:

A legally registered overseas company with an authentic and valid business license

Your company's basic information, such as industry, company name, address, contact person and contact information

Have an e-commerce website that is independent, either PC or mobile. The website/app should contain a payment link

 Companies with a mobile application should provide an app introduction page in the Apple Store/Android Market.

The products and services must comply with relevant legal provisions and Alipay requirements.

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