Payment Users Alliance
need urgent action on card fees", say Europe’s payment users
4 July 2014
The European Payment Users Alliance represents businesses
and consumers across Europe. We have a simple message for Europe’s politicians:
we need the interchange fee regulation as a matter of urgency. There is no more
reason for delay.
The regulation on interchange fees
must be treated as an absolute priority by the Italian Presidency so that it may
be adopted by the end of 2014 and come into effect as soon as possible. Europe
needs to move into a new payments world - yet the lack of this legislation is
holding us back.
Commerce is increasingly shifting from the
high street to the digital space. A whole, as yet untapped, market is emerging,
which will benefit merchants, consumers and payments providers. We need truly
forward-looking payment legislation to allow this new market to flourish.
need for EU action
Multilateral interchange fees have been found
at European Commission and court level to be anti-competitive; they have cost
businesses and consumers, on average, €9 billion per year for over a decade and
stand in the way of market development across Europe. EU Regulation is the only
way to tackle the MIF and associated restrictive contractual rules in a
coherent way and provide a true Single Euro Payments Area (SEPA).
benefits for all
The card schemes and banks would have us
believe that lower card fees would cost consumers money. On the contrary, healthier
competition is badly needed in the retail payments market to promote
innovation, improve customer service and ensure flexibility. The business
sectors in the Payment Users’ Alliance are highly competitive, guaranteeing
that cost savings will be passed on to their customers. The payments package
will provide benefits for all:
true choice of low-cost, safe, efficient electronic payments which operate
across the EU. Lower MIFs will produce better services and lower prices for all
consumers, whether they use payment cards or not.
ability to use cards at more outlets, as lower fees enable small merchants to
to new products and services at transparent costs.
access to new e-commerce services and new technologies.
will pay their fair share of card costs and no more: they will be able to improve
services and pass on savings to consumers.
access to an EU-wide market for products and services.
For payment providers:
expanded market and the emergence of new payment products will increase
transaction numbers and so maintain revenues.
services can be marketed through increased online traffic for banks.
will move to embrace new technologies, innovative payment products and make the
best use of new technologies.
the plenary text
In April, the European Parliament adopted a
text for the MIF Regulation which is well-balanced and will bring great
benefits to merchants and consumers across Europe.
the Council and the new Parliament to retain the plenary text as follows:
on debit and credit fees: the proposed 0.2% or 7 cents for debit and 0.3% for
credit should be an absolute maximum, with the option for member states to set
lower fees to suit local markets.
of commercial cards and 3-party schemes: all providers and products should be
treated in the same way - a fair price for all equivalent services.
cross-border acquiring: rules which prevent a true single acquiring market
should be abolished.
honour all cards rule: merchants must be allowed the choice to offer their
customers the most efficient electronic payment product. Other, more expensive
products should be optional for merchants and consumers.
anti-circumvention provision: the rule which prevents card schemes inventing
new fees, or increasing other non-MIF fees, should be strong enough to
encompass any future avoidance of the Regulation.
In addition, we
implementation: cross-border caps should come into place within two months of
adoption of the Regulation (as initially proposed by the Commission); domestic
caps should come into place within 6 months, with one year as absolute maximum.
further information please contact:
Farid Aliyev, Farid.Aliyev@beuc.eu Tel: +32 2 789 24 01
Anni Mykkänen, firstname.lastname@example.org Tel: +32 2 737 9799
Eamonn Bates, EBates@eamonnbates.com,
Tel: +32 2 286 94 84
Dennis Kredler, email@example.com Tel: +32 2 286 5123
EuroCommerce: Marjolein Raes, firstname.lastname@example.org Tel: +32 2 737 0599
Fuels Europe: Daniel Leuckx, email@example.com Tel: +32 2 566
Alexis Waravka, Alexis.Waravka@hotrec.eu Tel: +32 2 513 63 23
Gerhard Huemer, firstname.lastname@example.org
Tel: +32 2 230 7599