Since mid-February when Mastercard first announced its plans to support cryptocurrency transactions directly on its network, the payments giant has recorded significant progress in making digital assets accessible at several merchant locations. In its latest move to enhance its Crypto Card Program, Mastercard has announced a pilot program involving Paxos Trust Company, Circle’s USDC stablecoin, and several others. The initiative would allow cardholders to pay merchants using cryptocurrency at any Mastercard-accepted location.
In a Tuesday press release, Mastercard said that it wants to make it easier for partners to convert cryptocurrencies to traditional fiat currencies.
Paxos and Circle will use their platforms to facilitate crypto-to-fiat conversion via fiat-backed stablecoins. The USDC stablecoin will be used as an intermediary between fiat and other cryptocurrencies in the system. It would allow merchants to accept crypto payments from users while transacting only in fiat currencies themselves.
Speaking in the statement, Raj Dhamodharan, MasterCard’s Executive Vice President of Digital Asset and Blockchain Products and Partnerships, said:
Today not all crypto companies have the foundational infrastructure to convert cryptocurrency to traditional fiat currency, and we’re making it easier […] Through our engagement with Evolve, Paxos, Circle and the larger digital assets community, MasterCard expects to deliver on our promise of consumer choice to provide options to people around the world on how and when to pay.