DuitNow charges: Small businesses mulling cash-only transactions

29 Sep 2023 09:41am
Photo for illustrative purposes - BERNAMA PIX
Photo for illustrative purposes - BERNAMA PIX

SHAH ALAM - Small businesses disagree with the transaction charges on the DuitNow QR application effective starting on Nov 1.

Sinar’s survey here found vendors felt they would be burdened as they did not receive much profit from businesses.

Eatery vendor Sabariah Abdul Majid, 48, hoped for a solution to the issue as she did not want to cause inconvenience for consumers.

Photo from the left, Syafiqah Zahirah, Sabariah and Amirul Fitri
Photo from the left, Syafiqah Zahirah, Sabariah and Amirul Fitri

“I don’t agree with it. Currently, almost all transactions are done cashless either online or through the QR code scanner.

“The method eases transactions, but now it has become difficult as businesses are rejecting DuitNow usage due to the charges. Now because of this, we have to raise prices?

“If charged I will move towards a cash-only transaction despite the possibility of losing customers,” she said.

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DuitNow operator Payments Network Malaysia Sdn Bhd (PayNet) on Thursday confirmed the transaction charges for application users starting on Nov 1.

A news portal on Tuesday quoted RHB Reflex stating the structuring covered all banks that took part in the application.

It said vendors using DuitNow would be charged depending on the transfer method.

“A total of 0.25 per cent would be charged for vendors if a payment was made from a current or savings account while 0.50 per cent would be charged for transfers through credit cards,” RHB Reflex said.

This meant if the total transactions per month was RM100,000, vendors would have to pay RM125 to the respective DuitNow operating bank.

Desserts stall worker Syafiqah Zahirah Kamarul Zaman, 19, said the application charges would affect the business.

“This issue will burden other parties, especially during the cost of living and price hike increase that is already worrying.

“We cannot force the public to bring cash at all times as there are pros and cons,” she said.

Food vendor Amirul Fitri Norazmi, 28, said the implementation of the charges could affect long-term profit margins for small businesses as the funds could be used for purchasing ingredients.

Drink stall vendor Abdul Rahman Che Hamid, 29, did not reject moving back towards using cash transactions.

“If it is effective, we (small businesses) agree to return to cash transactions despite the risks of losing customers. Eventually, they will understand and purchase what they like,” he said.

Coffee-based drink vendor Mohd Faez Kamaluddin, 30, left it to the public to decide on whether they wanted to use cash or DuitNow.

He explained online transactions were much safer as the vendors did not need to be careful about holding cash on hand for a long period.

DuitNow services enabled the transfer of cash between banks and non-banking entities through a code scanner.

Among the non-banking entities popular with using DuitNow included Boost, GrabPay, Setel and Touch ‘n Go.