Reserve Bank of Australia: Reform of credit card schemes in Australia

The Reserve Bank of Australia has released its final reforms to credit card schemes in Australia.

The reform measures involve:

  • the adoption of an objective, transparent and cost-based benchmark which will be used as a basis for determining interchange fees in credit card schemes. Interchange fees are the fees paid to financial institutions which issue credit cards by financial institutions which provide services to merchants; these fees, in turn, are passed onto merchants and then into the prices of goods and services faced by consumers;
  • the end of the restriction imposed by credit card schemes which prevents merchants from recovering from cardholders the costs of accepting credit cards; and

  • the end of the restriction imposed by credit card schemes which limits the entry of new competitors into the schemes. Specialist credit card institutions authorised and supervised by the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) will be eligible to apply to participate in the credit card schemes.

The complete statement is available here.