ATM body seeks steep hike in interchange charges, flays new RBI norms for cash handling

ATM body seeks steep hike in interchange charges, flays new RBI norms for cash handling
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MUMBAI: The cash handling industry on Thursday termed the recently introduced rules by the Reserve Bank as “onerous” which will result in an increase in compliance costs and demanded a steep increase in their fees.

The Confederation of ATM Industry (Catmi) said it is essential for an increase of Rs 3-5 per transaction, above the current Rs 15, to cover the costs. The “onerous guidelines” put in place by the Reserve Bank include having a minimum fleet size of 300 specifically fabricated cash vans having GPS with two custodians and two armed security guards besides the driver, they said.

The RBI has also insisted that the vans should be monitored live with geo-fencing mapping with the additional indication of the nearest police station in the corridor for emergency and ATM operations should be carried out only by certified personnel who have completed minimum hours of classroom learning and training among others, the Catmi said.

“We exhort the RBI and NPCI to immediately increase the interchange rate to make this viable for the ATM services industry,” director of Catmi and BTI Payments managing director K Srinivas said.

“An interchange rate below cost of servicing each transaction will mean that the much-needed ATM expansion in semi-urban and rural areas is likely to slow down,” Euronet Services managing director Himanshu Pujara said.

It can be noted that the interchange fee is paid between banks for using the others’ network infrastructure. It gives a limited number of transactions free for customers, after which it starts charging.