Unified approach to acquiring business under study

DUBAI - MasterCard is working with the banks in the country to find a solution towards having a unified approach to the acquiring business. Various models are being suggested to all the acquiring banks in the country, according to a senior official of the payment association.

By Utpal Bhattacharya

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Published: Tue 20 May 2003, 12:17 PM

Last updated: Wed 1 Apr 2015, 9:18 PM

At a card exhibition, "Cards Middle East", which opened in Dubai yesterday, Louis A. Scotto, general manager, retail banking of Emirates Bank Group, said that a market of the size of the UAE should have just one acquiring company instead of multiple entities as this business would require huge investments to comply with the demands of the payment associations.

Giving the opening presentation at the conference, which runs parallel with the exhibition, Scotto also said that on the issuing side there should be a more rational approach and issuers should look at outsourcing rather than investing in their own card systems that again needs large investments.

Speaking on the sidelines of the exhibition, TK Raman, MasterCard's vice-president and country manager for the AGCC region, said that his payment association has initiated discussions with the banks in the UAE to work towards a more organised acquiring business.

He said that with the liability having now shifted to acquiring banks, realisation is gradually dawning that one strong acquiring entity would be able to do lot many things better in the market and that include compliance as well as dictating terms on the customers.

"Things are not the same as they used to be even six months back and we feel that in the near future the acquiring business in the UAE would be further enhanced, " he added.

Raman also said that MasterCard is all set to launch its first chip card in the Gulf region this summer.

The association's smart cards are already in circulation in Lebanon, he added.

Mohammed Belarj, senior vice-president and general manager of MasterCard International Middle East and North Africa (Mena), who gave the keynote address at the conference, spoke about the modern payment mechanism in the retail banking strategy.

Speaking about Cards Middle East, he said that the exhibition provides a relevant forum to showcase the programmes that payment associations provide to member financial associations.

"At MasterCard, we strive to be our members' best business partner by providing relevant card programmes, as well as expertise and advice ranging from marketing to business opportunities," he added.

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