No Longer Free, Bank Indonesia Imposes MDR Fees for QRIS Transactions


In a recent development, Bank Indonesia (BI) has implemented the Merchant Discount Rate (MDR) for merchants utilizing the Quick Response Indonesian Standard (QRIS) services. The MDR, a fee charged by BI, will be levied at different rates based on business categories, with micro-businesses being charged 0.3 percent, small to large businesses 0.7 percent, and educational institutions 0.6 percent.

This move by BI aims to support the sustainability of digital transactions, particularly those conducted through the QRIS system.

Suryono, the Head of BI’s Representative Office in Kepri, highlights the additional fee’s purpose, specifically stating that it is intended to maintain the digital infrastructure supporting the QRIS system. Suryono emphasizes that the fee is targeted solely at business participants and is necessary to ensure the continued functionality of the digital ecosystem.

According to BI’s data, the number of QRIS transactions in the first half of 2023 reached 6 million, showing an increase compared to the previous year’s 5.8 million transactions. Notably, micro-businesses accounted for 50 percent of these transactions.

Additionally, the total transaction value during January to June 2023 amounted to Rp873 billion, marking a significant increase compared to Rp670 billion during the same period in 2022. Approximately 30 percent of the transaction value in 2023 came from micro-businesses.

Erwin Haryono, the Head of BI’s Communication Department, explains that the MDR fees imposed on micro-businesses aim to enhance the quality of services provided to both merchants and users.

These fees are intended to offset the investments and operational costs incurred by various stakeholders involved in facilitating QRIS transactions, including payment service providers, switching institutions, service institutions, and standard institutions. The adjustment of the MDR for micro-businesses aligns with BI’s commitment to maintaining the quality and sustainability of the QRIS service.

Furthermore, Erwin Haryono emphasizes that the MDR fees do not contribute to BI’s revenue. Instead, the improved service quality resulting from the fees will benefit small businesses and promote financial inclusion. By ensuring the viability of the QRIS system, BI aims to provide a reliable and inclusive digital payment ecosystem that caters to the needs of businesses of all sizes.

Then, Taufik Ariesta, the Head of the Payment System Policy Implementation Team and Payment System Supervision and Rupiah Management, confirms that the MDR has been in effect since July 1, 2023. It is worth noting that the implementation of the MDR was previously scheduled for November 11, 2019, at a rate of 0.7 percent but was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

To ensure transparency and protect consumer interests, BI emphasizes the importance of consumer vigilance and will continue to provide public education and awareness campaigns regarding the MDR fees and their implications.