Concerns arise from EU consumers on a new legislation draft that may result in excessive fees and complications when using a payment card.
According to a survey held by global marketing research firm IPSOS in 13 EU countries shows 2 in 3 consumers believing the new proposal to cap interchange fees will worsen their use of their bank issued cards. 8 out of 10 strongly believe merchants and retailers will not pass on any cost savings by lowering product prices.
The survey, requested by MasterCard Europe, concentrated on consumer views on the European Commission proposals to set caps on interchange fees, which currently is the merchants and retailers contribution to the EU electronic payment systems. The proposed legislations would impact the cardholders by transferring the interchange fees to them.
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“Any new legislation on electronic payments should act in the best interest of card users.We commissioned this survey because of growing concerns that forcing down interchange fees artificially would drive up the cost of cards and prevent all market players from playing by the same rules. The results suggest that consumers across Europe share these concerns, and believe that the measures on the table are not in their interest,” said Javier Perez, President of MasterCard Europe in a press release.
65% of those who took the survey fear the legislation would leave worse off if deciding to use a credit or debit card. 82% of consumer believe retailers will not lower prices given they will no longer being paying the interchange fees, resulting in them theoretically paying the proposed interchange fees twice.
“It is unclear how the “one-size-fits-all” approach to capping cross-border and domestic interchange fees at apparently arbitrary levels can be justified. This is not a theoretical concern – it is based on evidence of what happened in countries like Spain when interchange was forced down artificially, and consumers were the ones who footed the bill.” continued Mr. Perez.