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Haiti - FLASH : Changes in credit card transactions
14/08/2017 08:30:54

Haiti - FLASH : Changes in credit card transactions
On Friday, the Bank of the Republic of Haiti issued a circular (101-3) to the banks and credit card companies, which determines the methods of invoicing credit card transactions to be applied as from 1 December 2017. Although addressed to financial institutions, this circular includes many changes that will affect all credit card users in Haiti and abroad.

1. Definitions applicable to this Circular :
a) Credit card: A payment card issued by a financial institution referred to in section 2 of the Bank Act and other financial institutions and enabling its holder to make payment transactions.

b) Affiliated traders and professionals: all suppliers of goods and services accepting the card as a means of payment.

c) Payment transactions: withdrawals, payments, advances or transfers of funds from electronic payment terminals.

d) Electronic payment terminal (EPT): An electronic device capable of reading data from a card. Record an operation, and communicate with a remote authentication server.

e) Holder: a natural person or legal entity in whose name a financial institution has issued a credit card.

2. Operations carried out both in the territory of the Republic of Haiti and abroad :
2.1 EPT display
Credit cards issued in Haiti must be paid for exclusively in gourde, regardless of where the transaction took place. In other words, whether the operation was carried out in Haiti or abroad, the regulation must be worded in gourde. At the time the cardholder makes a payment transaction using its credit card, the amount must be displayed in gourde at the TPE.

2.2 Statement of Account
As of December 1, 2017, the invoicing of transactions carried out in Haiti and abroad by a card issued in Haiti is exclusively in gourde.

Banks and credit card companies are required to ensure that merchants and affiliated professionals comply strictly with the provisions of this Circular. For the edification and consumer protection, banks and credit card companies are required to display day rates visibly at least two points of each of their branches.

3. Sanctions :
Failure to comply with this circular will result in the following penalties:

For any other violation, the BRH will demand the immediate cessation of the offending practice, take administrative sanctions, in particular a letter of reprimand against the wrongful institution and may apply a fine of 100,000 gourdes (HTG 100,000.00) for each violation found.

In addition, as a result of documented complaints from a customer and judged to be justified by the BRH, the latter may recommend the return of the indus paid by the customer, without prejudice to the remedies available to the customer.

Any fine will be deducted from the balance of one of the accounts of the bank at fault with the BRH. However, the payment of any fine by a credit card company will be made by management check payable to the Bank of the Republic of Haiti, no later than three (3) working days after receipt of the notice requiring payment. In case of non-payment within the deadline, penalties for delay will be applied additionally, ie two thousand five hundred gourdes (HTG 2,500.00) per late day.

4. Transitional Provisions :
The foreign currency balance of the credit cards issued in Haiti on the customer's statement of account must be converted into gourde at 31 March 2018 at the latest at the BRH reference rate.

5. Repeal and coming into force
This circular repeals Circular No. 101-2 and enter into force on 1 December 2017

HL/ HaitiLibre

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