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BC Card to take overseas fee issue with Visa to FTC

BC Card Co. is upping the ante in the dispute over an overseas fee system imposed by Visa.

According to industry sources, BC Card has decided to file a report with the Fair Trade Commission about Visa over the U.S.-based company’s policy of charging fees on transactions taking place outside of Korea.

Visa charges a fee equal to 1 percent of the transaction amount for every time a Visa card is used in automatic transaction machines outside of Korea.

However, BC Card has bypassed the clause since October 2009, by forming a partnership with the U.S.-based Star Network.

The arrangement prompted Visa to fine BC Card $50,000 for enabling overseas credit card transactions to be carried out without using its network, on basis that such arrangements do not create revenue for the company despite the fact that Visa-associated cards are being used.

In addition, Visa fined BC Card another $50,000 for forming a similar arrangement with a Chinese credit card issuer.

“The reason the company will be reporting Visa to the Fair Trade Commission is that Visa’s policy has coercive aspects. We are perfectly capable of making arrangements that are cost-free for the customers but Visa is forcing us to stick to a system has results in higher costs,” a BC Card official said.

“Filing the report with the Fair Trade Commission is likely to be completed within two weeks as there are some procedural matters,” a BC Card official said.

By Choi He-suk (cheesuk@heraldcorp.com)
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