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Banks still attempting to collect ATM fees   2008-08-06 - DanTri

Commercial banks have voiced their protest against the proposal made by the HCM City People’s Committee to the State Bank of Vietnam that banks should not collect ATM fees from state employees who get salaries from the state budget.


Luu Duc Khanh, Director of An Binh Bank, said that it would be unfair to collect fees from other clients while exempting fees for state employees. Khanh said that his bank may exempt fees for wounded soldiers or relatives of revolutionary martyrs, but there will be no preference for other clients.


He added that at this moment, banks are not collecting ATMs fees in order to share difficulties with clients, but they will collect fees later. Regarding the fee level, each bank will decide the fee based on their development strategies and investments.


Other banks also said that it is fair for service providers to collect fees from those who enjoy their services. Moreover, banks have to collect fees to offset the investment capital they have injected in installing ATMs, which is very costly.


According to Vo Van Chau, Director of Phuong Dong Bank, banks would incur losses if they spent money on ATMs but did not collect fees, and they would not have money for further investment. Chau said that it is very costly to invest in ATMs and the software to manage the ATM system, and banks would not make investment if they could not make profit.


Sharing the same view, Nguyen Thanh Toai, Deputy General Director of Asia Commercial Bank (ACB), said that those who get salaries from the state budget are not the main clients of ACB. Meanwhile, those who enjoy social insurance can go directly to the bank to get money.


On the proposal by HCM City authorities not to collect fees from those paid from the state budget, Tran Phuong Binh, Director of East Asia Bank, said: “I don’t want to see a difference in the treatment of state employees and other clients.” He added that clients can save money by withdrawing money once a month.


When asked to explain the troubles which are regularly happening with the ATM system, Binh said that banks always have difficulties in choosing places to install ATMs. Meanwhile, the quality of services greatly depends on telecommunications companies.

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