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Tue 26 Jan 2010 08:03 AM

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HSBC Middle East delays debit cards for second time

Bank says cards will be distributed in March, seven months later than originally planned.

HSBC Middle East has delayed its introduction of debit cards to its customers for the second time, it was reported on Tuesday.

The bank, which has 400,000 customers in the region, originally planned to distribute the cards in September 2009 but that was delayed until last month.

Distribution of the cards would now begin on March 1, the bank told UAE daily The National, without explaining the delay.

It is understood the bank, which has one of the largest chains in the Middle East, has blamed the latest delay on distribution problems, the paper added.

Bank employees are reported to have been using the debit cards since July.

HSBC Middle East is the final major chain to offer debit cards while some rivals in the region have provided them for more than a year.

Credit cards are more profitable for banks than debit cards, because customers build up balances that must be paid off each month to avoid interest charges.

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ali fakha 10 years ago

I think there must be wrong information regarding debit cards as already my colleague had the HSBC debit cards since one week while mentioned in the article the bank will start from March 1.