Thursday 26 November, 2020

Thousands of civil servants to receive free prepaid Mastercards

Oneil Grant (centre), President, Jamaica Civil Service Association proudly displays the new prepaid Mastercard to be distributed to 26,000 civil servants by mid December, to the delight of Peter Chin (left), CEO, Alliance Financial Services Limited and Kavin Hewitt ((right), CEO, ePayment Group.

Oneil Grant (centre), President, Jamaica Civil Service Association proudly displays the new prepaid Mastercard to be distributed to 26,000 civil servants by mid December, to the delight of Peter Chin (left), CEO, Alliance Financial Services Limited and Kavin Hewitt ((right), CEO, ePayment Group.

By mid-December this year, 26,000 members of the Jamaica Civil Service Association (JCSA) will each have a free pre-paid Mastercard.

The card can be used anywhere Mastercard is accepted, including point-of-sale terminals and withdrawals from ATM machines.  

Permission has been granted by the Ministry of Finance and the Public Service, to utilise the Human Resource Departments of Ministries, Departments and Agencies where there are JCSA members, in the distribution process.

What’s more, 250 merchants have partnered with JCSA to give discounts to the Mastercard holders, whose consumption per month is estimated to be $2.5 billion.

The cards are issued by Alliance Financial Services Limited (Alliance) which is authorised by the Bank of Jamaica to issue the ePAY Mastercard. The card will be co-branded as the JCSA ePAY Mastercard.  ePayment Group Limited provides the technology that supports the JCSA ePAY Mastercard.

In making the announcement, O’Neil Grant, president of the JCSA said the introduction of the prepaid Mastercard is timely, as Jamaica seeks to cope with the COVID-19 pandemic and discourage person-to-person contact.

“A number of other things have driven us to introduce this benefit to our members at this time, including the need to assist public sector workers to control their spending, especially salaries that can be automatically added to the card each month to avoid having to encash his/her pay cheque at a bank,” said Grant.

He described the prepaid Mastercard as a blend of the unique features of a debit card and the facility for loan disbursements to be loaded to the card.

Additional benefits will include significant savings resulting from loyalty programs where members receive discounts and cash back rewards whenever they purchase at participating merchants.

Grant said members of the JCSA have expressed excitement at receiving the card, which the association has been planning for almost a year.

CEO of e-Payment Group, Kavin Hewitt said his company “was excited about providing the technology that supports the JCSA ePAY Mastercard. We not only provide the technology, but will use our technical capabilities to design unique solutions and services to add significant savings and benefits for JCSA members.”

The JCSA president said:  “We are very confident that we will be able to meet and surpass the experience our members are expecting from the card, especially as we are now working to integrate the JCSA Mastercard with the services of the association’s savings and loans organisation, the Jamaica Civil Service Mutual Thrift Society, “

Speaking on behalf of Alliance Financial Services, Peter Chin, CEO said the growth strategy of his company is to enter into co-branding relationships with entities that have large numbers of customers or members.

“These entities usually want to cement their brands in the minds of their customers/members by offering a card with benefits and features unique to the issuing organisation to build loyalty.  So Alliance, through its ePay Mastercard products and services, has been able to offer this service to the JCSA ” he noted.

Chin said Alliance Financial Services was approved in 2017 as a principal member of the Mastercard network and is, therefore, the leading issuer of Mastercard prepaid cards in Jamaica.

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