Consumer Action is supportive of the approach by the Reserve Bank of Australia to the electronic payments system and we welcome the pragmatism of the RBA in stepping in and regulating interchange fees where it appeared that market forces had not achieved adequate competition.
Consumer Action believes that regulators, such as the RBA, should explicitly consider the impact of their decisions on vulnerable and disadvantaged consumers. In relation to regulation of the electronic payments system, this would include the RBA considering the link between credit card use, debt traps, and personal bankruptcy and possible impacts on economically disadvantaged consumers of the coercive use of direct debit arrangements.
We also believe that the application of the ‘no-surcharge rule’ as it currently stands has anticompetitive effects that cause detriment to consumers and we recommend modification of this rule.
To read our submission, click here: Reform of Australia’s Payments System.