Great article, Misha!

Even though both PayPal and Alipay serve the same purpose and work in a similar way, it's unlikely that they are going to compete against each other any time soon. I don't believe that PayPal would be ever allowed to operate in China as equivalent to Alipay. Paypal would certainly face too many regulatory challenges and legal obstacles.

I think that one of the principal issues with Paypal in China would be the fact it has high degree of anonymity, all you need to have an account is a credit card issued by any bank anywhere in the world . On the other hand, Alipay account is tied to the owner's identity and requires registering with ID.