Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) urges the banking industry to take measures to reduce the cost of handling cash and cheques used for credit card and loan repayments which amounted to about RM2.4 billion annually.
According to BNM, this was a sheer wastage when a cheaper alternative was readily available.
BNM opines that financial institutions must upgrade their management information systems to capture the cost of different payment methods and identify areas with potentials for greater operational efficiency.
Financial institutions should also foster better coordination between their respective revenue and cost centres to achieve optimal financial performance.
From 2011 to 2013, the handling of cheques declined at a marginal rate of 2% on average, eased 10% in 2014 and fell further by 16% in the first nine months of 2015. In 2014, there were 101 million transactions involving both cash and cheques which resulted in higher costs of handling.
BNM is now projecting that the number of cheques cleared to fall from about 207 million transactions in 2010 to 149 million by end of 2015. By 2020, the target is 100 million cheques which could save a minimum of RM300 million handling cost.
For cash, financial institutions need to achieve an annual decline rate of 15% annually.
In near future, the payment system infrastructure such as Malaysia Electronic Payment System and MyClear should cooperate with the banking industry to avoid duplication and wastage besides to keep pace with innovation and meet user needs.
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