Letter from MasterCard/Europay UK Limited
I am writing to you in your capacity as Chairman
of the Treasury Select Committee to outline the views of MasterCard/Europay
UK Limited (MEPUK) on the Government's proposal to legislate to
open up the payment services industry to competition and the proposed
establishment of a sectoral regulator, PayCom.
MEPUK is the representative body of the licensees
of the MasterCard International and Europay International brands
in the UK.
No one would argue against the Review's belief
that competitive outcomes in the payment services industry are
Indeed, the market for payment cards is already
internationally recognised as being characterised by vigorous
competition. Our concern is that this position may be jeopardised
by the imposition of an additional layer of regulation at UK level
and that the Government's proposals as they currently stand are
potentially unworkable for the regulation of payment card schemes,
which are international in nature.
This international nature of the schemes is
reflected in the fact that the payment cards industry is already
subject to competition law at UK, European Union and international
Crucially the public interest case for additional
regulation in this area has not been demonstrated.
For your interest, I attach a document summarising
MEPUK's views which has been distributed to other interested parties
in and around Westminster. [Not printed.]
I understand that the Committee's Banking Inquiry
is set to resume in earnest in the near future and would welcome
the opportunity to meet you to discuss these issues further.
3 November 2000