The ACCC has issued a draft determination proposing to grant re-authorisation to parties to provide fee free ATM services in very remote Indigenous communities for 10 years.
Under the arrangement, participating banks and ATM deployers provide fee-free ATM withdrawals and balance enquiries at up to 85 selected ATMs for customers of those banks. The ACCC previously authorised the arrangement in 2012 for five years, which expires in December.
“The arrangement co-ordinated by the Australian Bankers’ Association has resulted in significant public benefits over the past five years, which are likely to continue for the next ten years,” ACCC Commissioner Roger Featherston said.
People living in very remote Indigenous communities can often pay high levels of total ATM fees, due to frequent ATM usage and a lack of access to alternatives.
“High ATM usage and fees intensifies the financial and social disadvantage found in very remote communities. Enabling Indigenous people in these communities to have the same access to fee-free ATMs that other Australians enjoy in less remote parts of the country lessens this disadvantage,” Mr Featherston said.
The proposed conduct allows for additional banks and ATM deployers to be added to the arrangement.
The communities to benefit from this project are located across the Northern Territory, Queensland, South Australia and Western Australia. The full lists of ATM locations and participating banks are attached to the draft determination, available on the public register.
The ACCC is now seeking submissions on the draft determination by 16 November 2017 and expects to release its final determination in December 2017.
Further information is on the ACCC’s public register at: Australian Bankers’ Association Inc. – Revocation and Substitution – A91593