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Indonesia delays rules for reporting credit card customer data

[JAKARTA] Indonesia's finance ministry has delayed a regulation requiring all credit card providers to submit customer data to the tax office until the end of its tax amnesty programme, a tax spokesman told Reuters.

The finance ministry in March issued a regulation requiring card providers to submit all transaction details - including customer and merchant identities - to the tax office every month starting on May 31, a move that bankers say has pushed people back to cash.

Hestu Yoga Saksama, the tax office spokesman, said on Wednesday that the implementation of that regulation has been delayed "to support the government's cash-less campaign."

To further strengthen the campaign, Saksama said the tax authority is now considering a new incentive to make some part of credit card bills tax deductable. He declined to elaborate.

The central bank launched its National Non-Cash Movement Initiative in August 2014, aiming to increase public awareness of the benefits of paying more with electronic accounts, but until now Indonesia remains a largely cash-based economy.

The central bank has said going cash-less could help Indonesia in its fight against money laundering, corruption, the circulation of counterfeit currencies and terrorism financing.

The tax amnesty is the government's flagship programme to improve tax compliance and get more revenue this year.

The programme, which officially started on July 18, offers low penalty rates for taxpayers who declare wealth obtained by untaxed income.

The programme ends in March 2017.

REUTERS