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INTERVIEW: Mastercard sees CEE countries as digitalisation pace-setters

INTERVIEW: Mastercard sees CEE countries as digitalisation pace-setters Vanya Manova Mastercard Source: Mastercard

SKOPJE (North Macedonia), February 13 (SeeNews) - Global technology company Mastercard sees central and eastern Europe (CEE) as its fastest-growing region in terms of digitalisation, its regional manager Vanya Manova told SeeNews in a recent interview.

Different countries in the region are competing for the top position but the truth is all of them are developing very well, and countries like Bulgaria, North Macedonia, and even Albania, are reporting huge growth, Manova, Mastercard country manager for Bulgaria, Macedonia, Albania and Kosovo, told SeeNews last week in Skopje. 

On Friday Mastercard signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the government of North Macedonia to provide a range of digital solutions in the country allowing its citizens to prove their identity when accessing government and business services. The solutions are based on a distributed model that eliminates the need for a centralised identity database.

"We believe that this will be a great showcase for the others [in Southeast Europe]," Manova said, stressing that Mastercard sees potential, understanding and common willingness of all the stakeholders in North Macedonia to move forward and go digital.

"What we are observing here in North Macedonia, is that there is a common understanding about the importance of digital services and how they not only improve the way of living of the people, but also help decrease the gray economy," the official said.

Expanding its offer of digital solutions is among the highlights of the company's business plan for the next five years.

"Our main goal is, through our technology, to help the businesses, the governments, and all stakeholders to go digital, develop further and offer competitive and convenient services to the end-customer," Manova stressed. 

Answering a question on the obstacles to the implementation of digitalisation projects in the region, Manova said that the legislation in the region, and in North Macedonia in particular, is conducive to business and economic growth. 

"Even though the country [North Macedonia] is not yet in the European Union (EU), they have already started implementing the EU legislation," Manova noted, adding that having similar laws and regulations across the region is of key importance as it helps interoperability.

Mastercard, a technology company in the global payments industry, is present in more than 210 countries and territories.