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PayPal launching in Lebanon and Egypt

  • FILE - In this Thursday, March 29, 2012 file photo, a vehicle drives in front of the PayPal/eBay offices in San Jose, Calif. (AP Photo/Paul Sakuma, File)

BEIRUT: PayPal will finally launch in Lebanon and Egypt in 2013, the general manager of the online payment gateway, Elias Ghanem, announced Thursday at the ArabNet conference.

Paypal is fully enabled – meaning buyers and sellers with locally issued bank accounts can do complete transactions – in the GCC and Jordan. In Yemen, Morocco, Tunisia and Algeria, customers can also open accounts to pay purveyors.

Though the prevalence of cash-on-delivery in the Middle East delayed the rollout of PayPal in the MENA region, the trend now appears to be shifting.

In an interview with ArabNet founder and CEO, Omar Christidis, Ghanem said that e-commerce in the MENA region was a $9 billion industry in 2012 and is projected to reach $15 billion by 2015.

PayPal currently has a 5 percent share of the market and aims to raise its share to 10 percent in the next three years.

 
A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Daily Star on March 22, 2013, on page 5.
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