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Alipay out from Japan's cashless rebate program

Foreign visitors also ineligible for stimulus aimed to soften 2019 tax hike

A shopper makes a purchase via smartphone at an airport. Japan will exclude foreign services like Alipay from its domestic rewards program.

TOKYO -- Japan intends to exclude foreign digital payment services such as Alibaba Group Holding's Alipay from a rebate program for cashless purchases, a measure designed to cushion the blow from a consumption tax hike coming next October.

Visitors from overseas also will be unable to take advantage of the government-subsidized rewards program, which is aimed at promoting the spread of cashless payments as well.

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