It takes around 30 days for a credit, or debit card payment to be processed in Brazil. This compares badly with the two days it takes in Chile and the US, which is the required international standard. What’s more, in some territories, debit card funds can be transferred almost in real-time.
Banks argue that the longer payment period does reflect the fact that customers are given a month free of interest.
The Monetary Policy Director of The Central Bank of Brazil Aldo Mendes said that the situation as regards the payment period was sensitive, but that it was the intention to follow international practice in the future. He pointed to ‘peculiarities’ in the Brazilian market which made change harder and that new processes could not happen immediately.
The monetary authority confirmed that it was working with a number of associations to identify “bottlenecks” that exist in the system. There is also a hint of regulatory intervention, should obstacles be placed in the way of planned changes.
One feature the Central Bank is monitoring is how to make a charge for the use of a debit card, related to the value of the purchase. Although, they recognise that collecting a percentage of the purchase price can prevent the purchase of high cost items. This process, says the Central Bank, is being improved to match standards found in other countries.
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