Visa & MasterCard - Authorisations - A91379 & A91380

Summary

On 4 July 2013, Visa and MasterCard applied for authorisation to make and give effect to arrangements between themselves and Participating Financial Institutions (see list at in the Applicants' supporting submission) regarding the implementation of mandatory use of PINs at points of sale ("PIN@POS") (i.e. the removal of signatures as a method of authorisation).

The application was amended on 2 September to extend the application to permit American Express to also participate in the relevant conduct. The application was further amended on 10 October to clarify the conduct for which authorisation is sought and to extend timeframe for which authorisation is requested.

In general terms, the applicants are seeking authorisation to make and give effect to arrangements with each other and Participating Financial Institutions that provide that:

(a) MasterCard will amend its scheme rules and arrangements to provide for specific provisions to implement mandatory PIN@POS with the same effect as the rules and arrangements that Visa has already put in place;

(b) if it chooses to participate, American Express may also implement arrangements in relation to mandatory PIN@POS that have the same or substantially the same effect as the Visa and MasterCard schemes, although the terms of the mandate may be different; and

(c) the applicants, American Express (if they choose to participate) and Participating Financial Institutions will jointly fund a public communications strategy, agree on and adhere to terms regarding that strategy.

Authorisation is sought until 31 October 2015. A copy of the application, amendments to the application and the applicants' supporting submission are available by following the links below.

On 18 September 2013, the ACCC granted interim authorisation to permit the applicants and one or more of the Participating Financial Institutions to make arrangements and/or arrive at understandings and give effect to those arrangements and/or understandings relating to the public communications strategy regarding voluntary adoption of PINs at point of sale in Australia. Further detail regarding this is specified in the statement of reasons available at the links below.

On 11 October 2013, the ACCC granted the applicants' further request for interim authorisation (made by the applicants on 2 September 2013) which enables the applicants and participating financial institutions to enter into arrangements with American Express regarding its involvement in the coordinated implementation of PIN@POS.

On 11 October 2013, the ACCC issued a Draft Determination which proposed to grant authorisation to Visa and MasterCard to permit them, American Express and Participating Financial Institutions to coordinate in relation to PIN@POS and sought further submissions from interested parties.

On 18 December 2013, the ACCC made a Final Determination granting authorisation to Visa and MasterCard to permit them, American Express and Participating Financial Institutions to coordinate in relation to PIN@POS until 30 October 2015.

Applicant(s)

  • MasterCard Asia/Pacific Pte Ltd
  • Visa AP (Australia) Pty Ltd
  • Visa Worldwide Pte Limited

Authorisation number(s)

  • A91379
  • A91380

Decisions

ACCC correspondence

Document title Date

Submissions - before draft decision

Document title Date