MasterCard Inc. has introduced a mobile payments service designed to link consumers, carriers and banks around the world.

The Mobile Payments Gateway, announced Monday, enables people to link existing MasterCard credit and debit cards to their phones, which they can then use to make purchases or send money.

The Purchase, N.Y., payments company is using mobile technology from Smart Hub Inc., a subsidiary of Smart Communications Inc., a Philippine wireless carrier.

The gateway will be used initially in Brazil, where the banking company Itau Unibanco Holding, the processor Redecard and the wireless carrier Vivo Participacoes have agreed to offer it.

MasterCard already has a mobile payments service in the United States that uses person-to-person transfer technology developed by Obopay Inc.

"We are efficiently connecting financial institutions, merchants and consumers together to mobilize MasterCard payment solutions," Joshua Peirez, MasterCard's group executive of innovative platforms, said in a press release.

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