Reform of Australia's Payments System 7. Process and Implementation

The Board's final decision on interchange fees will be made by August 2009. At that time, it will assess the extent of progress by industry in addressing the various issues raised above. If the Board's concerns are met, interchange regulation would be removed, probably in November 2009. However, in the event that the Board's concerns are not adequately addressed, regulation of interchange fees would continue. In this case, it is anticipated that draft standards would be released for comment late in 2009, with the aim of finalising the new regulatory arrangements in the first quarter of 2010. Further, the resetting of interchange fees with respect to the current benchmarks, which is due to occur in November 2009, would not be required and the Board would make a technical amendment to the Standard in August 2009 to give effect to this.

In the meantime, the Board plans to introduce a technical modification to the interchange fee Standards in November 2008 to remove the requirement for future cost studies. Cost studies were due to commence over the next few months to fulfil the requirement in the credit card and EFTPOS interchange fee Standards for such a study to be completed at least every three years.