September 11, 2018 (MLN): The State Bank of Pakistan has restricted all the banks in Pakistan from charging any variable transaction fee (Interchange, Merchant Discount Rate, etc.) on payments made to the Federal and Provincial Governments using any electronic mode of payment, including payment cards, electronic wallets, or other mediums.
The decision comes as part of the State Bank’s agenda to promote digital payments in the country, which the bank has been actively pursuing for some time now.
“The acquiring banks, however, may charge a pre-determined flat service fee from concerned government entities with mutual agreement,” it added.
These instructions, coming via a circular issued by the State Bank of Pakistan dated Monday, September 10, 2018 also state that they shall be applicable at the time of signing of any new agreements as well as at the time of the renewal of existing agreements.
All issuing and acquiring banks, microfinance banks and payment schemes have been advised to comply with these instructions.
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