To create a cheque-free future in Singapore, many leading banks of the country have decided to raise fees for processing the cheques. In the league, OCBC has emerged as the latest local bank to adopt this strategy of surging fees for processing cheques. The moment the latest move will become effective, the bank will begin to charge a sum of S$0.75. As of now, it is expected that from next month, the local lender will implement the move.
Presently, customers of OCBC’s small-medium enterprise or SME do not have to shell out a single penny for processing the first 30 cheques every month. However, things are likely to change from the next month. The bank will levy fees of S$0.75 per cheque. Earlier, OCBC’s arch-rival DBS had already announced the move of raising fees for processing cheques. DBS was the first local lender to hike fees for processing cheques.
DBS has already started charging S$0.75/cheque this month. The bank did not charge any fees earlier till the first 30 cheques. The move is going to benefit many in Singapore. It will help banks save whopping millions of dollars if they can effectively convince organizations to carry out transactions in the digital mode as a result of the high cost of processing cheques. In the year 2015, the cost of processing cash and cheques rose to approximately S$ 2 billion.
Meanwhile, small-medium enterprises or SMEs are making all the efforts to bring down their dependence on cheques and shifting to begin using ‘real-time settlement network FAST’ also known as Fast and Secure Transfers. In a bid to boost digital payments, the bank has announced to waive off fees for the first 30 FAST transactions and PayNow transactions through FAST every month from October 1 to December 31. After the first 30 FAST transactions, the fee will be S$0.50/transaction.
Prior to this move, Oversea-Chinese Banking Corporation or OCBC became the first and only Singapore based bank to connect with JPMorgan’s live blockchain service known as Interbank Information Network or IIN. The step helped Singapore’s bank join the rest of 112 banks from Asia-Pacific region. Regional banks dominated the participants’ list. With the joining of several regional banks and OCBC bank, IIN managed to include approximately 345 banking members all over the world.
IIN was launched in the year 2017 as a pilot program to deal with various problems linked with the global payment process. IIN continued functioning on a permission blockchain launched by JPMorgan known as Quorum.