WhatsApp, the messaging service owned by Meta Platforms Inc., will soon allow users in Brazil to make payments, via debit or credit card, to businesses through the app.

It was revealed on Thursday that the Central Bank of Brazil had finally authorised the long-awaited launch of the payment feature. The move, which had previously been halted by regulators, will allow users to browse and add products, and make payments to small businesses right from their WhatsApp chat.

Recent data shows that Brazil still has the largest user base for WhatsApp outside of Asia with an estimated 147.37 million people using the service in the country in 2022, accounting for more than 54 percent of its user base in the entire South American subcontinent.

It is by far the most used social media platform in Brazil with more than 96 percent of the Brazilian population an active user of the app.

Zuckerberg had previously said that facilitating ecommerce and payments would allow Meta to tap fresh revenue streams and gather data to increase the value of its existing advertising.

Although WhatsApp had rolled out a peer-to-peer (p2p) payments feature in Brazil and India enabling money transfers between individuals it has taken until now to finally get the p2m service approved.