RBA Official Says E-Commerce Makes Australian Payments System Look ‘Dated’

May 29, 2012

The payments system in Australia has not evolved as consumers in that country have embraced online shopping, according to Glenn Stevens, the governor of the Royal Bank of Australia. According to a report in the Sydney Morning Herald, Stevens says the rise of e-commerce has created the impression that electronic payments can be made instantly at any time of day or night, while in reality, Australian businesses must wait a day or more to receive electronic transfers. Online retail has been a key driving force behind the rapid growth in electronic payments and Stevens said the system must catch up with that growth.

“It is not that long ago that it was accepted that if a person wanted to ensure that they had enough cash to see them through the weekend, they had to make sure that they visited their bank branch by closing time on Friday,” he said last week in Sydney. “But we would all see that as completely unacceptable these days and I think we have reason to hold the rest of our payments system to the same standards.”