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Apple Pay now available in Belgium and Kazakhstan

Apple Pay has gone live in two more countries, with customers of some banks in Belgium and Kazakhstan now able to make purchases in stores using their iPhones via Apple's mobile payments platform.

The launch in Belgium makes it the latest European country where citizens can use Apple Pay. It was hinted on Tuesday that a launch would take place the following day, after local reports indicated demonstrations to the media were arranged to take place on Wednesday morning.

For the moment, Apple Pay is exclusive only to BNP Paribas Fortis, along with its subsidiaries Hello Bank and Fintro, for both Mastercard and Visa-based cards. Customers of other banks are likely to have to wait several months before Apple Pay is made available at other financial institutions in the country.

Mobile payments and NFC transactions have been in Belgium for quite some time, with Apple Pay arriving a year and a half after Android Pay, now known as Google Pay, went live in the country.

Relatively unexpected in comparison, the support for Apple Pay in Kazakhstan has started with Eurasian Bank for Mastercard customers. Apple's list of participating banks and credit issuers that support Apple Pay also includes ATFBank, Halyk Bank, Sberbank, Bank CenterCredit, and ForteBank.

Apple advises that while a bank may be identified as supporting Apple Pay, the facility may not be supported by all banks from a financial institution, and to contact the banks themselves for more information.

The additions of Belgium and Kazakhstan brings the total number of countries where Apple Pay is offered by banks up to 31. It is likely that more countries will be added to the list before the end of the year, with Apple Pay anticipated to go live in Germany soon, potentially with