Asharq Al-awsat English Middle-east and International News and Opinion from Asharq Al-awsat Newspaper

Saudi Arabia Asks Gas Stations to Provide E-Pay Service

Saudi Arabia Asks Gas Stations to Provide E-Pay Service

Tuesday, 9 July, 2019 - 13:45
Dammam- Iman Al-Khattaf
Gas stations in Saudi Arabia will start using e-payment options as of July 17, according to the Commercial Anti-Concealment National Program’s official account on Twitter.

It said this comes in line with the Anti-Concealment National Program’s initiatives.

Secretary-General of the Media and Banking Awareness Committee for Saudi Banks Talat Hafez said this step did not mean stopping cash payments at gas stations in the coming period.

He told Asharq Al-Awsat that it aimed at enhancing e-payment methods in the country in line with the global trend in this regard.

“The decision to provide all gas stations in the Kingdom with the e-payment option will come into force next week, and all stations that don’t abide by this new decision will be fined,” he added.

He stressed the Saudi banks’ keenness to provide POS terminals for gas stations, other shops, and commercial and service establishments.

“The past years have seen a significant expansion in the spread of this type of equipment, a number and geographical distribution balanced between the Kingdom’s cities,” Hafez noted, adding that the number has doubled to reach more than 382,000 devices by the end of May.

Regarding the incentives provided by the banks to gas stations, Hafez said they include: exemption from installation fees or monthly fees, granting of a free SIM card even without a landline, access to system statements at any time through online system, acceptance of all e-payment cards and provision of automatic transfers from POS machines to the seller’s account.

In addition to that, banks offer ease of control and management through transaction statements, efficient and safe collection of funds and improved sales effectiveness so cash transactions are not limited to cash, according to Hafez.

Ministry of Municipal and Rural Affairs explained that the project supports the Commercial Anti-Concealment National Program and comes in line with efforts to facilitate daily life, encourage consumers to use e-payment methods, and reduce monetary transactions.

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