Migrant workers to pay less for cash withdrawing

Updated: 2006-12-31 16:10

Chinese banks that issue debit cards will begin to reduce the rate of bank-card service charge for cash withdrawing by migrant workers on Feb. 1, 2007, a fresh move to better serve farmer-turned workers who put money in banks near their work place and withdraw it at their hometown.

Under the latest requirement of the People's Bank of China, China's central bank, all the banks should cut the service charge rate from 1 percent to 0.8 percent, with the ceiling charge for each transaction lowered from 50 yuan to 20 yuan (6.4 to 2.6 US dollars).

Statistics show that about 130 million Chinese farmers leave their hometown for work in cities every year. With the approaching of the Spring Festival, the Chinese lunar New Year that falls on Feb. 18, 2007, most of them will return home, bringing with them what they have earned in the year for family reunion.

To facilitate the farmer-turned workers, the central bank asked the debit card-issuance banks to open the new service to the migrant workers. As a pilot project, the service was first launched in Guizhou Province, southwest China in December 2005, and was spread to 11 provinces and cities in July 2006, including the coastal provinces of Shandong and Fujian.

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