The UK’s Payment Systems Regulator (PSR) has published an information request that it has sent to six payment schemes (American Express, Diners Club International, JCB International, MasterCard, UnionPay International and Visa Europe) to help it understand whether or not any schemes qualify for a temporary exemption from part of the Interchange Fee Regulation (IFR).

The PSR will be the lead UK regulator for the IFR which, among other things, sets interchange fee caps on card-based payment transactions within the UK and Europe. The interchange fee caps will apply from 9 December 2015.

The IFR affords certain discretion to Member States. In the UK, the Government has decided to grant a time-limited exemption from domestic interchange fee caps to three-party schemes which:

  • operate with licensee issuers and / or acquirers; or
  • issue cards with a co-branding partner or through an agent.

The PSR has published the information request in the interests of transparency, so that all stakeholders have access to the same information. The contacted payment schemes have been asked respond by 3 December 2015.

View Information requests from the PSR in relation to the EU Interchange Fee Regulation, 19 November 2015