Transparency needed over threat to cash machine network

STOCK: cash machine.
STOCK: cash machine.

The Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) is backing calls for a thorough and transparent decision-making process over proposed changes, which could lead to a cut in the number of cash machines.

LINK, the UK’s major cash machine network, has put forward plans to reduce the fee paid by card providers to cash machine operators.

Responding to a letter to LINK from Nicky Morgan MP, Chair of the Treasury Select Committee, raising concerns about the consultation process, FSB National Chairman Mike Cherry said: “Access to cash is crucial for communities across the UK and the small businesses within them.

“With significant cuts to the number of bank branches in recent years, the cash machine network has become even more vital.

“LINK’s proposals may actually result in parts of the cash machine network becoming less viable, and could leave some high streets and villages without access to a cash point.

“This would be bad for consumers and bad for businesses so it is important that decisions on this are made responsibly and with full transparency.

“Specifically, it is difficult to see how LINK expects to achieve its stated goal of improving access to cash if it reduces the financial ability of cash machine operators to provide the service.

“The intervention of the Treasury Select Committee on this is very welcome.

“I also look forward to discussing this directly with LINK in the coming weeks.”