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As a continent, the economy of Europe is currently the largest on Earth and it is the richest region as measured by assets under management with over $32.7 trillion, compared to North America's $27.1 trillion in 2008. As with other continents, Europe has a large variation of wealth among its countries. The richer states tend to be in the West; some of the Central and Eastern European economies are still emerging from the collapse of the Soviet Union and the breakup of Yugoslavia. 


The European Union, a political entity composed of 28 European states, comprises the largest single economic area in the world, with 19 EU countries sharing the euro as a common currency. There are five European countries that rank in the top ten of the world's largest national economies in GDP (PPP): Germany, Russia, the United Kingdom, France, and Italy. As a whole, Europe’s Gross Domestic Product ranks third amongst the world’s seven continents at $21.8 trillion, while the GDP per capita also ranks third at $29,410. The GDP value of today’s European Union represents 15.8 percent of the global economy. 


In terms of e-commerce, Europe has a strong market with annual revenues nearing $350 billion, while user penetration for the region is at 60 percent and rising. Online sales in the region are growing exponentially, especially in Southern Europe, where growth is fueled by e-commerce thanks to its young population. In Europe, the internet penetration is at 82.5 percent, with Northern and Western Europe being the regions with the highest internet penetration (respectively 93.3 and 92.3 percent). Despite the openness of European consumers to shop from international websites, local payment methods dominate. A local entity is not required to accept local payment methods in each market, but it is required to have an entity in at least one European country to accept cards across all markets. 

About Europe


Domestic currencies and rates

Overseen by European Central Bank regulators

FX services to convert to local EU currencies

SEPA transfers

EUR, PLN, CHF, SEK, HUF, RON local currencies and more

Visa and Mastercard prepaid and debit card options

Domestic top-ups by credit and bank transfer


With a total of 44 countries, Europe is the third-most populated continent in the world with a total population of approximately 747 million. The European payments landscape has evolved over recent years, with card payments making a significant contribution towards the digitalization of European commerce.

Top 10 Countries by Population

(in millions) 

Top 10 Countries by GDP

(in USD billions) 

Having developed strategic relationships with several issuing banks in the European region, Intercash is well prepared to deliver global payment solutions tailored for your business. 

e-Commerce Market

Total ecommerce revenue 2019

$337.96 USD (286.89 €)

Ecommerce users


Internet Penetration


Want to learn how Intercash’s global payment solutions can help your business?

Contact us today to speak with an Intercash Account Executive.

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