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PayNet confirms transaction charges, downplays price hike concerns

PayNet says the 50 sen fee for transaction fee is for peer-to-peer fund transfers and is unrelated to merchant payments. (Paynet Website pic)

PETALING JAYA: Payments Network Malaysia Sdn Bhd (PayNet) has confirmed that vendors will be charged a transaction fee for payments received via the DuitNow QR code platform from Nov 1

PayNet said two different e-payment types have been described by the media as the same: the merchant discount rate (MDR) and the 50 sen fee for transactions exceeding RM5,000.

“Currently, debit and credit card payments are subject to MDR, while there is an MDR waiver for QR payments. Starting Nov 1, the MDR waiver for DuitNow QR payments will be lifted,” it said in a statement today

PayNet said the MDR is neither a new fee nor an additional charge. “As an incentive to promote usage during the introduction of QR payments in 2019, the MDR was waived,” it said.

“This waiver was extended further due to the Covid-19 pandemic.”

As for the 50 sen fee highlighted in news reports, PayNet said it is for peer-to-peer fund transfers and is unrelated to merchant payments.

“Both (the MDR and 50 sen) fees will not be charged for the same transaction in any situation,” it said.

“It is inaccurate to state that the RM0.50 fee is charged for payments made to merchants. It is also incorrect to claim that MDR is charged for fund transfers using personal QR codes.”

Addressing concerns that the MDR costs will be passed onto consumers, PayNet pointed out that purchases made with credit and debit cards already incur MDR.

“Products and services purchased with credit or debit cards are priced the same as cash purchases,” it said.

“Therefore, we expect similar considerations and do not anticipate that the prices of goods and services will be affected by DuitNow QR payments after the imposition of MDR.”

Yesterday, it was reported that transaction fees will be imposed on merchants who receive payments via DuitNow from Nov 1. Currently, there is a 50 sen fee for any DuitNow transaction exceeding RM5,000.

The DuitNow QR service was established by PayNet under Bank Negara Malaysia’s Interoperable Credit Transfer Framework, or ICTF.

According to a screenshot posted on X (formerly Twitter), the RHB Reflex platform had informed a user that the fee would be a minimum of RM0.01 per transaction. The fee will purportedly be 0.25% of the transaction value if the payment is made from a current or savings account, and 0.5% by credit card.