(Bloomberg) -- Australia’s central bank is working with the government to modernize the country’s regulatory framework for retail payments, following which it will launch a “holistic review” of the sector, a senior official said. 

“There are many interesting policy issues to explore, including the cost and transparency of payment services and how we can promote competition that benefits end users,” Ellis Connolly, head of payments policy at the Reserve Bank, said in a speech in Melbourne on Tuesday.

The reforms will allow the RBA to regulate “newer players” including payment gateways, payment facilitators, digital wallet providers and buy now, pay later services, Connolly added.

Once the reforms are in place, the RBA will launch a “holistic review” of retail payments regulations, Connolly said. 

“This review will help us to set our regulatory priorities for the next few years,” he said. 

It will focus on specific issues, including:

  • Transparency of payment services, in particular transaction fees
  • Merchant Payment Costs to encourage financial institutions to route debit transactions to the lowest-cost card network
  • Whether the current surcharging framework is fit for purpose
  • Mobile wallet fees and competition issues
  • Cost and transparency of cross-border payments

Many of these issues involve online retail payments, which are growing strongly in Australia, Connolly said. He cited a consumer payments survey where 40% of consumer payments, by value, were online in 2022, up from 13% in 2007.

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