MasterCard is "focused on finding ways for people to interact in simple, smart ways with the ecosystem to be able to replace cash with electronic ways of paying," said Ajay Banga, MasterCard president and CEO.

Addressing the MasterCard Innovation Forum in Singapore, Banga highlighted innovations, pointing out the use of biometrics and facial recognition for safety and security.

The innovations included the biometrics and cards for financial inclusion for undeserved people in places such as South Africa and India... to the use for the World Food Program compensating people to convert from physical food to digital food.

"To me these are all innovative. For that matter, progress in the space of prepaid cards is innovative," said Banga.

These innovations would make a big difference in the way people think about the cash in their wallet versus electronic payments, he added.

Elaborating on how commerce was changing forever, he said, "the fact is that today there are between 10 and 14 billion connected devices connected to the internet. Estimates are that by 2020 that number will be somewhere between 20 and 40 billion connected devices. When that happens, you change

The two-day Forum, held on September 24th and 25th, brought together more than 350 participants from the Southeast Asia, Middle East and Africa as well as expert speakers from the industry, to discuss the evolving needs of businesses and showcase the latest innovations on the payments front.

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