Australian banks officially denied right to negotiate terms with Apple

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The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has officially rejected the proposal by large Australian banks who wanted to negotiate as a group with Apple.

The news comes in as Apple Pay rollout in the country has been slow due to disagreements between the banks and Apple.

Due to anti-cartel laws, Commonwealth Bank of Australia, Westpac Banking Corporation, National Australia Bank, and Bendigo and Adelaide Bank are required to negotiate with Apple individually as apposed to a group. This makes sure that competition is fair and there’s no monopoly.

ACCC chairman Rod Sims said in a statement that there are more cons than benefits for negotiating with Apple as a group:

“The ACCC is not satisfied, on balance, that the likely benefits from the proposed conduct outweigh the likely detriments. We are concerned that the proposed conduct is likely to reduce or distort competition in a number of markets.

While the ACCC accepts that the opportunity for the banks to collectively negotiate and boycott would place them in a better bargaining position with Apple, the benefits would be outweighed by detriments.”

The ACCC’s decision is a good one, however. Hopefully this is the end of the battle and Australian banks can simply move forward and start allowing Apple Pay within the country.

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