The Petrol Retailers Association (PRA) is calling on the Government to revise its plans on access to cash.
It says retailers have a vested interest in cash and guaranteeing that it is widely accessible, and therefore welcomes provisions in the Financial Services Bill that would reduce restrictions on offering ‘cashback’.
However, it believes the legislation appears ill-thought out, stressing that it is unclear how businesses would financially benefit from offering a transactionless cashback service.
There are also concerns regarding the risk of holding a large amount of cash on site.
Brian Madderson, PRA chairman, commented: “Given that it is a voluntary service, the take-up from retailers may be limited as the Government have yet to make it clear how they would be remunerated. These plans should also not be used as a pretext for justifying slashing the number of ATMs. Between January 2019 and September 2020, the total number of ATMs in the UK fell from 62,967 to 55,674. If not revised, this measure will only fuel that decline.
“The Government have not addressed the major security risk of our members holding larger floats. This problem is particularly acute at rural sites where a greater stockpile of cash, combined with lengthy police response times, would significantly increase the chances of armed robbery”.