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Response to European Parliament vote on a cap on card-based interchange fees

Following the European Parliament vote today in support of a cap on card-based interchange fees, Richard Koch, Head of Policy at The UK Cards Association, warned of the potential impacts on the UK’s 47 million cardholders.

He said:

“The interchange fee ensures that retailers make a fair contribution to the operation of the card payments system, in return for which they benefit through guaranteed payments, security from fraud and the ability to accept payments online. The effects of these proposals are likely to mean a card payments system which, in the future, looks and feels very different, with potentially less to invest in fraud prevention, innovation and competitive offers to consumers. We are calling on the UK Government and EU policy-makers to ensure that a balance is struck where all parties who benefit from the card payments system pay a fair proportion for its operation”.

ENDS

For further information contact:

Giles Mason or Andrew Horne from The UK Cards Association on 020 3217 8436 or email Press@ukcards-ffauk.org.uk

Notes to editors:

1.Earlier this year a coalition of consumer bodies and debt charities issued a joint statement saying they are ‘highly sceptical’ that the gains for retailers will be passed on to consumers in lower prices. The statement from Christians Against Poverty, the Centre for Responsible Credit the Money Advice Trust, The Money Charity, MoneySavingExpert.com, and Toynbee Hall highlighted their collective concern of the “unintended consequences” of the proposals.

About The UK Cards Association

The UK Cards Association is the trade body for the card payments industry in the UK, representing financial institutions which act as card issuers and acquirers. Members of the Association account for the vast majority of debit and credit cards issued in the UK - issuing in excess of 56 million credit cards and 88 million debit cards - and cover the whole of the payment card acquiring market.

The Association promotes co-operation between industry participants in order to progress non-competitive matters of mutual interest; informs and engages with stakeholders to shape legal and regulatory developments; develops industry best practice; safeguards the integrity of the card payments industry by tackling card fraud; develops industry standards; and co-ordinates other industry-wide initiatives such as those aiming to deliver innovation. As an Association we are committed to delivering a card payments industry that is constantly focused on improved outcomes for the customer. www.theukcardsassociation.org.uk

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