Greek Finance ministry is beginning widespread checks of electronic payment systems (POS) with the aim to protect consumers and to safeguard public interest, Deputy Finance Minister Katerina Papanatsiou said on Thursday.
Speaking in Parliament, Papanatsiou said that inspection mechanisms were in full alert and all necessary instructions have been given to conduct spot prevention checks. The inspections seek to establish whether the controlled person engaged in economic activity has a POS payment receipt card machine, installed by a foreign payment services provider and requested quote evidence to establish the origin of the payment service provider.
The issue raised by the MP of the Democratic Coalition party Vasilis Kegkeroglou, who, with timely question, pointed out that “there are fraud methods and the state need to shield transactions, so as not to break the confidence of consumers.” Mr. Kegkeroglou also requested the government to arrange for the issue of excessive charges by banks on enterprises and consumers.
The Deputy Finance Minister pointed out that under the existing institutional framework, the supplier is not entitled to impose charges to consumers for the use of the specific payment instrument. Therefore, additional charges in everyday transactions by electronic payment instruments are prohibited.
Referring specifically to monitoring, Ms. Papanatsiou said that already, in collaboration with Economic Police, a company’s clientele was under, after evidence found that the company was supplying Greek businesses with POS devices that were settling payment transactions in a foreign bank, while the contracts were signed after the imposition of capital controls, which was not allowed.
On the question of bank charges, the Deputy Finance Minister stressed that commercial banks’ pricing policy was formed based on the principles of free competition, within the limits of the social acquis.
“In any case it is known that the collective market participants have signed agreements with financial institutions, which provide total commission significantly below 1%,” Papanatsiou said.