Draft code foresees free credit card option to cure fee complaints

Draft code foresees free credit card option to cure fee complaints

ISTANBUL - Anatolia News Agency
Draft code foresees free credit card option to cure fee complaints

Banks will be obliged to offer a fee-free credit card according to the draft code.

The Turkish government is looking to remedy the problem of widely criticized credit card fees with a draft code that calls all banks to offer a fee-free credit card that customers can use only for shopping.

Banks’ credit card fees has been arousing harsh complaints from consumers who say these fees are illegal and the Customs and Trade Ministry has been working on a scheme to soothe public objections. It seems like the ministry finally found the solution in making a free-paid credit card within their card portfolio obligatory for banks. 

“I believe we will be able to eliminate consumer remonstrance on credit card fees by obligating banks to offer a simple credit card,” Turkey’s Customs and Trade Minister Hayati Yazıcı told Anatolia news agency May 12 in an interview.

The minister said they anticipate passing the draft code that regulates the alternatives banks offer to customers before the end of the parliamentary year. 

“76 million consumers are awaiting this draft to pass into law,” Yazıcı said. As part of its program to create a fairer scheme for banks’ noninterest revenues, the government also plans to empower the Banking Regulation and Supervision Agency (BDDK) to regulate banking fees and commissions.

The banks’ noninterest revenue items, which numbered 31 last year, have almost doubled in a year and became 60, said the minister, adding even this doesn’t mean all banks charge on 60 noninterest items, the government foresees a regulation to set a upper limit for them. 

However, the minister also said nobody can find it strange that banks, as commercial actors, are trying to maximize their profits. The high expenses banks charge are drawing strong attention by consumers and the unions.