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Australia: Banks fight back over Apple Pay ‘fantasy’ claims

 |  February 13, 2017

The group of Australian banks fighting it out with Apple over the introduction of the consumer electronics giant’s mobile payment system have narrowed down their complaint to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission to focus solely on open access to the NFC function on iPhones.

The five banks – Commonwealth Bank of Australia, Westpac Banking Corporation, National Australia Bank, and Bendigo and Adelaide Bank – were initially seeking permission from the competition watchdog to engage in collective negotiation with Apple in relation to the roll out of Apple Pay in Australia.

In December, the Commission issued its provisional ruling, coming down in support of Apple and expressing concerns that a ruling in favour of the banks could reduce or distort competition in a number of markets.

In their latest submission, the banks have sought to address the ACCC’s concerns by removing collective negotiation on the potential to pass-through the additional fees Apple wishes to impose on the payment system, and limiting the authorisation term to 18 months – half the original term sought.

The response comes just a week after Apple accused the banks of wanting to price Apple Pay out of the market and at the same time condition consumers to accept a fee-based model for tap-and-pay transactions for their own mobile wallets.

Full Content: The Sidney Morning Herald

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