SEOUL, July 5 (Korea Bizwire) – Visa Inc., a global payment network company, said Tuesday it will raise the fees for overseas credit card purchases using its networks it receives from South Korean credit card companies starting next year.
In May, Visa notified Korean card firms of its planned fee hikes from October 2016. In June, the country’s eight card issuers sent a joint letter to protest the planned hikes in Korea because there were no such plans in Japan and China.
In a reply letter sent on July 1 to the Credit Finance Association (CREFIA), Visa said, “it is inevitable for us to raise the card fees due to increased facility investments in Korea to better serve our (corporate) customers,” according to CREFIA spokeswoman Kim Mi-ra.
Visa has only readjusted the timeframe for the hikes to January from October, Kim said.
“We called on Visa to withdraw its planned hikes. And when Visa decides on any fee hikes in the future, we want it to consult with its partner card companies,” she said. “Unless Visa cancels its hike plan, we may consider bringing the unfair practices to the antitrust regulator.”
Visa Korea spokeswoman Chung Yoon-young said the company has already delivered its official stance toward the fee hikes in the letter.
In Korea, Visa plans to raise the fees for Koreans’ overseas settlements using its global payment networks to 1.1 percent from the existing 1.0 percent.
For example, if Koreans pay US$1,000 using their Visa-affiliated credit cards for overseas purchases, they will have to pay $11 in card charges to Visa through their Korean card issuers from next year, up from the current $10.