New rules on credit card fees in Canada


Finance Minister Joe Oliver unveiled an update to the code of conduct for the credit and debit card industry this week. The new revisions will expand the voluntary code to include mobile payments involving smart phones. And while premium credit cards are also required to be clearly branded, consumers must be informed of the fees that cards impose on business owners.
Although Oliver’s announcement is being supported by the Retail Council of Canada and the Canadian Federation of Independent Business, a group of business owners representing grocers, travel agents, convenience store owners and other associations, feel that the revisions are not enough.

According to CFIB President Dan Kelly, “The number one issue was the high cost of accepting credit cards.”
The Small Business Matters Coalition, which represents over 98,000 businesses in Canada, says that MasterCard and Visa fees are still too high.

Coalition Chair and Vice President of the Canadian Federation of Independent Grocers Gary Sands says, “We continue to believe as a coalition that the fundamental and most important issue remains that of high credit card fees and we are not satisfied as a coalition that there has been a meaningful or significant step in the right direction in that area.”

The coalition also includes the Canadian Convenience Stores Association, the Independent Petroleum Marketers and the Association of Canadian Travel Agencies.

Back in November of 2014, Visa and Mastercard agreed to reduce their fees charged to businesses to an average of 1.5 per cent. CJ