Banks collude over fees

Augetto Graig
The Namibian Competition Commission (NaCC) has found that commercial banks in Namibia colluded to manipulate fees for transactions with credit and debit cards.
The NaCC says the agreement entered into by the Payments Association in Namibia (PAN) with the banks to set credit and debit card fees is a breach of provisions 23(1) and 23(2)(a) of the Competition Act no. 2 of 2003.
According to the commission, the banks all accepted a schedule for card fees and established transaction costs for purchases on debit and credit cards from at least 2014 to 2020.
In a statement, the NaCC says that negotiations on the transaction fees were not permissible according to the agreement and amount to fixing prices, which is against the law.
According to the NaCC, FNB, Standard Bank, Nedbank, Bank Windhoek, Atlantic, Bank BIC, Letshego Bank, Trustco Bank, Nampost Savings Bank and even the Bank of Namibia (BoN) are guilty of this.
The commission demands that this action be stopped and proposes a fine of up to 10% of offenders' turnover.
Commercial banks and PAN have been given 30 days from Friday to submit submissions or oral evidence in mitigation to the NaCC.
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