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Other as amended, taking into account amendments up to Payment Systems (Regulation) Act 1998 - Variation to the Access Regimes for the MasterCard and Visa Credit Card Systems (December 2014)
Administered by: Treasury
Registered 06 Jan 2015
Start Date 01 Jan 2015

Description: Commonwealth Coat of Arms

Access Regime for the Visa Credit Card System

as amended

made under section 12 of the

Payment Systems (Regulation) Act 1998

Compilation start date:                      1 January 2015

Includes amendments up to:   Variation to the Access Regimes for MasterCard and Visa Credit Card Systems, F2014L01760.

 

 

About this compilation

This compilation

This is a compilation of the Access Regime for the MasterCard credit card system as in force on 1 January 2015. It includes any commenced amendment affecting the legislation to that date.

This compilation was prepared on 1 January 2015.

The notes at the end of this compilation (the endnotes) include information about amending laws and the amendment history of each amended provision.

Uncommenced amendments

The effect of uncommenced amendments is not reflected in the text of the compiled law but the text of the amendments is included in the endnotes.

Application, saving and transitional provisions for provisions and amendments

If the operation of a provision or amendment is affected by an application, saving or transitional provision that is not included in this compilation, details are included in the endnotes.

Modifications

If a provision of the compiled law is affected by a modification that is in force, details are included in the endnotes.

Provisions ceasing to have effect

If a provision of the compiled law has expired or otherwise ceased to have effect in accordance with a provision of the law, details are included in the endnotes.

 


Access Regime

 

 

Access Regime for the Visa Credit Card System

 

Objective

The objective of this Access Regime is to promote efficiency and competition in the Australian payments system, having regard to:

(i)                 the interests of current participants;

(ii)               the interests of people who, in the future, may want access to the system;

(iii)             the public interest; and

(iv)              the financial stability of the designated credit card system.

Application

1.                This Access Regime is imposed under section 12 of the Payment Systems (Regulation) Act 1998.

2.                This Access Regime applies to the credit card system operated within Australia known as the VISA system or the VISA network card system designated on 12 April 2001 by the Reserve Bank of Australia under section 11 of the Payment Systems (Regulation) Act 1998, which is referred to in this Access Regime as “the Scheme”.

3.                In this Access Regime:

an “acquirer” is a participant in the Scheme in Australia that provides services to a merchant to allow the merchant to accept a credit card;

an acquirer is a “self acquirer” if it acquires transactions for which it or a related body corporate (as that term is defined in the Corporations Act 2001) is the merchant;

“authorised deposit-taking institution” has the same meaning given to that term in section 5(1) of the Banking Act 1959;

“credit card” means a card issued under the rules of the Scheme that can be used for purchasing goods or services on credit, or any other article issued under the rules of the Scheme and commonly known as a credit card;

a “former specialist credit card institution” is an entity which, as at 31 December 2014, was an authorised deposit-taking institution that engaged in credit card issuing, credit card acquiring or both (within the meaning of Regulation 4 of the Banking Regulations 1966) and which did not otherwise conduct banking business within the meaning of section 5 of the Banking Act 1959;

an “issuer” is a participant in the Scheme in Australia that issues credit cards to the issuer’s customers;

“merchant” means a merchant in Australia that accepts a credit card for payment for goods or services;

“rules of the Scheme” mean the constitution, rules, by-laws, procedures and instruments of the Scheme as applied in Australia, and any other arrangement relating to the Scheme by which participants in the Scheme in Australia consider themselves bound;

a “specialist credit card institution” is:

(a)     an authorised deposit-taking institution that engages in, or proposes to engage in, credit card issuing, credit card acquiring or both (within the meaning of Regulation 4 of the Banking Regulations 1966) and does not otherwise conduct banking business within the meaning of section 5 of the Banking Act 1959; or

(b)     a former specialist credit card institution;

terms defined or having a meaning in the Payment Systems (Regulation) Act 1998 have the same meaning in this Access Regime.

4.                Each participant in the Scheme must do all things necessary on its part to ensure compliance with this Access Regime.

5.                If any part of this Access Regime is invalid, it is ineffective only to the extent of such part without invalidating the remaining parts of this Access Regime.

6.                This Access Regime is to be interpreted:

(a)     in accordance with its objective; and

(b)     by looking beyond form to substance.

7.                This Access Regime originally came into force on 23 February 2004. This Access Regime as amended comes into force on 1 January 2015.

Eligibility to apply to participate in the Scheme

8.                Any authorised deposit-taking institution or former specialist credit card institution is eligible to apply to participate in the Scheme in Australia.

9.                The administrator of the Scheme may establish (through the rules of the Scheme or otherwise) any criteria for eligibility to apply to participate in the Scheme in Australia in respect of entities other than authorised deposit-taking institutions and former specialist credit card institutions (“eligibility criteria”), provided these eligibility criteria are reasonably related to the risks to the Scheme or its participants, merchants or cardholders that are likely to arise from the participation. If eligibility criteria are established they must be applied by the administrator of the Scheme in accordance with their terms.

10.              Any entity, other than an authorised deposit-taking institution or former specialist credit card institution, is eligible to apply to participate in the Scheme in Australia, provided the entity meets any eligibility criteria.

Assessment of applications to participate in the Scheme and terms of participation

11.              Subject to paragraphs 12 and 13, the administrator of the Scheme must establish (through the rules of the Scheme or otherwise) and apply criteria for assessing applications for participation in the Scheme in Australia by eligible applicants (“assessment criteria”).

12.              Neither the rules of the Scheme, nor the administrator of or any participant in the Scheme, shall discriminate between specialist credit card institutions as a class and authorised deposit-taking institutions other than specialist credit card institutions as a class in establishing or applying assessment criteria or in relation to the rights and obligations of participants in the Scheme in Australia, except to the extent reasonably required to assess and address the risks to the Scheme or its participants, merchants or cardholders arising, or likely to arise, from the participation of the class of entity in the Scheme in Australia.

13.              Without limiting paragraph 12, neither the rules of the Scheme, nor the administrator of or any participant in the Scheme, shall discriminate against an entity (or class of entity) in establishing or applying assessment criteria or in relation to the rights and obligations of participants in the Scheme in Australia, except to the extent reasonably required to assess and address the risks to the Scheme or its participants, merchants or cardholders arising, or likely to arise, from the participation of the entity (or class of entity) in the Scheme in Australia.

14.              Neither the rules of the Scheme nor any participant in the Scheme shall prevent a participant in the Scheme in Australia from being:

(a)     an issuer only; or

(b)     an acquirer only; or

(c)     both an issuer and an acquirer.

15.              Neither the rules of the Scheme nor any participant in the Scheme shall impose on a participant in the Scheme in Australia any fee, charge, loading or any form of penalty as a consequence of, or which is related in any way to, that participant’s activity as an acquirer relative to its activity as an issuer in the Scheme.

16.              Neither the rules of the Scheme nor any participant in the Scheme shall prohibit a participant in the Scheme in Australia from being a self acquirer if the participant can reasonably establish in accordance with the rules of the Scheme that, as a self acquirer, it has the capacity to meet the obligations of an acquirer.

Transparency and assessment of applications

17.              The administrator of the Scheme must continuously publish on the Scheme’s website:

(a)     any eligibility criteria and the risks that the eligibility criteria seek to address;

(b)     the assessment criteria and the risks that the assessment criteria seek to address; and

(c)     the maximum time it will take to assess any application to participate in the Scheme in Australia before terms of participation will be proposed to the applicant or a decision on the application will be made.

18.              The administrator of the Scheme must provide to an entity that has applied to participate in the Scheme in Australia an estimate of the time it will take to assess the application before terms of participation will be proposed to the applicant or a decision on the application will be made.

19.              The administrator of the Scheme must assess applications in a timely manner without undue delay.

20.              The administrator of the Scheme must provide to an entity that has applied to participate in the Scheme in Australia reasons in writing if the application is rejected, within one month after such rejection.

Certification and reporting

21.              The administrator of the Scheme must provide to the Reserve Bank on or before 31 July each year a certificate:

(a)     certifying, in respect of the twelve-month period ending on 30 June of that same year (the “reporting period”), that:

(i)      at all times during the reporting period the eligibility criteria and the assessment criteria were in compliance with this Access Regime;

(ii)     any applicant admitted to the Scheme during the reporting period met, at the time of admission, all risk-related eligibility and assessment criteria; and

(iii)    at all times during the reporting period it has otherwise complied with this Access Regime; and

(b)     listing all entities whose application to participate in the Scheme in Australia was either made during the reporting period or outstanding at the commencement of the reporting period and details for each entity (as applicable) of:

(i)      the date on which the application was made;

(ii)     the outcome of the application;

(iii)    the date(s) on which any proposal of terms of participation or conditional approval was communicated by the administrator of the Scheme to the applicant, the date on which the final decision on the application was communicated to the applicant and, if the final decision was to admit the applicant to the Scheme, the date on which the applicant was admitted to the Scheme; and

(iv)    where the application was rejected, the reasons the application was rejected; and

(c)     listing all entities who ceased to be participants in the Scheme in Australia during the reporting period and providing details of the reasons these entities ceased to be participants to the extent known by the administrator of the Scheme.

 


Endnotes

Endnote 1—About the endnotes

The endnotes provide details of the history of this legislation and its provisions. The following endnotes are included in each compilation:

 

Endnote 1—About the endnotes

Endnote 2—Abbreviation key

Endnote 3—Legislation history

Endnote 4—Amendment history

Endnote 5—Uncommenced amendments

Endnote 6—Modifications

Endnote 7—Misdescribed amendments

Endnote 8—Miscellaneous

 

If there is no information under a particular endnote, the word “none” will appear in square brackets after the endnote heading.

 

Abbreviation key—Endnote 2

The abbreviation key in this endnote sets out abbreviations that may be used in the endnotes.

 

Legislation history and amendment history—Endnotes 3 and 4

Amending laws are annotated in the legislation history and amendment history.

 

The legislation history in endnote 3 provides information about each law that has amended the compiled law. The information includes commencement information for amending laws and details of application, saving or transitional provisions that are not included in this compilation.

 

The amendment history in endnote 4 provides information about amendments at the provision level. It also includes information about any provisions that have expired or otherwise ceased to have effect in accordance with a provision of the compiled law.

 

Uncommenced amendments—Endnote 5

The effect of uncommenced amendments is not reflected in the text of the compiled law, but the text of the amendments is included in endnote 5.

 

Modifications—Endnote 6

If the compiled law is affected by a modification that is in force, details of the modification are included in endnote 6.

 

Misdescribed amendments—Endnote 7

An amendment is a misdescribed amendment if the effect of the amendment cannot be incorporated into the text of the compilation. Any misdescribed amendment is included in endnote 7.

 

Miscellaneous—Endnote 8

Endnote 8 includes any additional information that may be helpful for a reader of the compilation.

Endnote 2—Abbreviation key

 

ad = added or inserted

pres = present

am = amended

prev = previous

c = clause(s)

(prev) = previously

Ch = Chapter(s)

Pt = Part(s)

def = definition(s)

r = regulation(s)/rule(s)

Dict = Dictionary

Reg = Regulation/Regulations

disallowed = disallowed by Parliament

reloc = relocated

Div = Division(s)

renum = renumbered

exp = expired or ceased to have effect

rep = repealed

hdg = heading(s)

rs = repealed and substituted

LI = legislative instrument

s = section(s)

LIA = Legislative Instruments Act 2003

Sch = Schedule(s)

mod = modified/modification

Sdiv = Subdivision(s)

No = Number(s)

SLI = Select Legislative Instrument

o = order(s)

SR = Statutory Rules

Ord = Ordinance

Sub-Ch = Sub-Chapter(s)

orig = original

SubPt = Subpart(s)

par = paragraph(s)/subparagraph(s)

 

          /sub-subparagraph(s)

 

 

Endnote 3—Legislation history

 

Name

FRLI registration or gazettal

Commencement

Application, saving and transitional provisions

Access Regime for the Visa Credit Card System

23 February 2004
(see F2008B00363)

20 February 2004

Variation to the Access Regimes for MasterCard and Visa Credit Card Systems

19 December 2014
(see F2014L01760)

1 January 2015

 

Endnote 4—Amendment history

 

Provision affected

How affected

Heading entitled “Access Regime”

am F2014L01760

Paragraph 2

am F2014L01760

Paragraph 3

am F2014L01760

Paragraph 6

am F2014L01760

Paragraph 7

am F2014L01760

Heading entitled “Eligibility for participation”

am F2014L01760

Paragraph 8

am F2014L01760

Paragraphs 9, 10 and 11

ad F2014L01760

Paragraph 9

renum F2014L01760; am F2014L01760

Heading entitled “Terms of participation”

am F2014L01760

Paragraph 10

renum F2014L01760

Paragraphs 11 and 12

renum F2014L01760

Heading entitled “Transparency”

am F2014L01760

Paragraph 13

renum F2014L01760; am F2014L01760

Paragraph 14

renum F2014L01760; am F2014L01760

Paragraph 15

renum F2014L01760; am F2014L01760

Paragraph 21

ad F2014L01760

 

 

 


 


Endnote 5—Uncommenced amendments

[none]

 

Endnote 6—Modifications

[none]

 

Endnote 7—Misdescribed amendments

[none]

 

Endnote 8—Miscellaneous

[none]