Companies continue practice despite warnings

Companies continue practice despite warnings

Although the Competition Council has called on companies to review and put an end to the practice of “surcharging” online payments which impacts consumers’ purchasing power, it seems that they are persisting in their behavior in order to continue to take advantage of it.

The Competition Council noted, in a press release issued in mid-May, that certain companies operating in different sectors of economic activity and allowing online payment for their services, make their customers bear the cost of this service in addition to the bill to pay, noting that by using electronic payment, these companies significantly reduce their operating and investment costs related to bill collection.

It considered that this practice, which is not economically justified, is abusive and could distort free competition on the markets concerned by providing undue advantages to certain operators, allowing them to strengthen their positions on the market, to the detriment of consumers.

In this sense, the Council had called on these companies to review their practices in this area and said that it reserved the right to initiate proceedings against those who persisted in this practice which is detrimental to the development of competition in the markets. of the country’s economy and to the digitization project in which Morocco has embarked.

However, on June 1, many netizens circulated images on social media documenting the payment of bills over the Internet, including those charges that are still being taken from their accounts, criticizing the exploitation of the consumer by these companies.

For these Internet users, the charges are illegal and this practice is described as “fraud” and “theft”, claiming that it requires the intervention of the competent authorities to stop the companies involved in these “violations”.

Ahmed Rahhou, president of the Competition Council, had revealed, in a previous statement to MoroccoLatestNews, that these companies had collected, through these practices, millions of dirhams monthly without any justification.

Rahhou affirmed that the Council has a priority list of companies involved in these practices, the number of which fluctuates between 20 and 30, and which is evolving rapidly, stressing that the institution will write to them in order to put an end to this practice which harms the purchasing power of consumers.

We were waiting for companies to respond to the call of the Competition Council“, said Bouazza Kherrati, president of the Moroccan Federation of Consumer Rights (FMDC). ” However, we were surprised that there were no changes in the new month” , he added.

Kherrati clarified, in a statement to MoroccoLatestNews, that “ we condemn the companies that force the consumer to pay electronically and deprive him of his right to choice which has become oppressed by the lobbies that think only of profit“.

The president of the FMDC considered that this situation is contrary to the requirements of law 31-08, which stipulates the freedom of choice for the consumer, indicating that certain suppliers ” have delegated this payment method to apps, and it’s a procedure that has nothing to do with the consumer who shouldn’t pay for it“.

In this sense, Kherrati called on the State to intervene and prevent treating the consumer as a source of profit, and called on the Moroccan consumer to unite and become aware of their rights in order to confront these practices.

And to conclude, Kherrati emphasizes: “We ask the consumer to avoid these kinds of payments, so that these companies and these lobbies stop exploiting the weakness of law enforcement. We only demand the application of the law and its respect, and the stopping of these electronic transactions”.


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