CARDS & PAYMENTS | Staff Reporter, Thailand

Thailand mulls harsher stance against cash transactions

Banks are considering additional fees as it aims to speed up e-payment adoption.

Thailand is said to be mulling additional charges for cash transactions at bank branches and ATMs in a bid to encourage digital payment adoption, reports Bangkok Post.

Also read: Thailand's digital shift to boost banking revenue

Banks are also said to be considering the possibility of reducing the frequency of free cross-bank transactions via ATMs from the current five times allowed on a monthly basis.

However, the central bank acted quickly to soothe public outcry as it pledges to take into consideration the financial inclusion and familiarity with technology before acting on the proposal. "It's an issue that must be pondered and assessed thoroughly," said Chantavarn Sucharitakul, assistant governor for corporate strategy and relations. 

Kasikornbank president Predee Daochai also said that the proposed fees for cash transactions have not been finalised even as it looks to grow its mobile banking business that already has nearly 10 million users.

Thai lenders have been aggressively investing in a digital overhaul of their business as they lose customers to alternative payment and money transfer providers. In April, the country’s four largest banks, Bangkok Bank, Kasikorn Bank, Siam Commercial Bank (SCB), and Krungthai Bank, dropped charges on digital transactions including money transfers, bill payments and cash withdrawals even at the cost of hurting banking bottomline.

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