EPC and Euro Retail Payments Board Driving Innovation in Payments

EPC and Euro Retail Payments Board Driving Innovation in Payments

EPC progresses recommendations from Euro Retail Payments Board

28 October 15

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The Euro Retail Payments Board ( ) was designed to bring together the supply and demand sides of the industry and help foster “the development of an integrated, innovative and competitive market for retail payments in euro in the European Union.” Its work consists mainly of identifying strategic issues and work priorities (including business practices, requirements and standards) and ensuring they are addressed.

Credit Transfer instant payment scheme

The European Payments Council ( ) was invited by the at its June meeting “to present to the by November 2015 a proposal for the design of an instant credit transfer scheme in euro, which could be adhered to by payment service providers on a voluntary basis.”

Following this invitation the has since the summer been working on the design of a Single Euro Payments Area ( ) Credit Transfer ( ) instant scheme, under the guidance of an High Level Group on instant payments (which has met three times in the July-October timeframe) and with the involvement of other stakeholders.

The ’s proposal for the design of a new instant payment scheme will be presented to the at its next meeting on 26 November. The is of the opinion that there is a need for an instant payment scheme based on credit transfer at -level. The will recommend that scheme participation is not mandatory for Payment Service Providers ( ). In addition, it is likely that the new scheme will re-use elements of the rulebook as much as possible in order to facilitate its implementation.

Once the proposal for a scheme design is approved by the , the will draft the rulebook and its implementation guidelines. The standard process, including the public consultation, will then begin, taking in total around a year to complete. Therefore, the rulebook could be published in November 2016 at the earliest. With the launch scheduled for November 2017 at the earliest, interested , clearing houses and other stakeholders will have at least one year to get ready.

The is dedicated to ensuring that the implementation of pan-European real-time payments is as seamless as possible to make it as efficient as it can be.

mobile payments workshop

The has also recently announced that it is holding (at the ’s request) a free of charge stakeholder workshop focused on Person-to-Person ( ) mobile payments on 10 December 2015. The workshop aims to facilitate the cooperation of existing and future mobile payment solutions, in order to ensure their interoperability on a pan-European level.

It will cover the following topics:

  • The development of a set of rules and standards enabling pan-European mobile payment services.
  • The governance structure responsible for the management of this set of rules.
  • The creation of a harmonised method allowing mobile payment data to be exchanged among solutions (i.e., a ‘Standardised Proxy Lookup’ service), so that any user can potentially reach any other user in Europe.
  • Current and forthcoming data protection regulation which could affect interoperable mobile payment solutions.

More information about this workshop can be found on the EPC website.

The evolution of existing schemes

At the December 2014 meeting of the , various recommendations were made regarding the existing and Direct Debit ( ) schemes:

  • The ’s customer-to-bank (C2B) implementation guidelines ( ) should be mandatory in the next rulebook change management cycle. The rationale behind this was to reduce costs for corporate payment service users ( ) in establishing and maintaining different interfaces with their and facilitate the switching of a corporate between .

The interprets the recommendation as making the C2B mandatory for the and schemes participants as a minimum standard to be accepted by . Customers would however still have the choice either to continue using their current (national) C2B file set-up or to opt for the C2B file based on specifications. This topic will be included as a change request in the 2016 public consultation.

  • The ’s bank-to-customer (B2C) should be mandatory in the next rulebook change management cycle.

The has previously concluded that it was not a viable option to make these mandatory and instead published a mapping document on the reporting of transactions by to the . The , therefore, recommends updating this document as a first step towards harmonisation of the B2C space.

  • The should look for more appropriate attributes in the long-term perspective (e.g. Legal Entity Identifier (LEI)) to identify a creditor.

After analysing the potential added value of the LEI in the and schemes, the has concluded that it is too soon to include an attribute for the LEI in the rulebooks. Once the LEI is broadly used by corporate legal entities, the rulebooks could be adapted to foresee the use of the LEI.

Having said this, the evolution of the existing schemes is currently a work in progress and the proposed rulebook change recommendations will be subject to a three-month public consultation in the second quarter of 2016, before the new versions of the rulebooks are approved in the autumn, and published in November 2016.

The actively contributes to the objectives and work of the as well as to the implementation of the agreed upon recommendations, with the full involvement of all other stakeholders. Updates regarding future meetings and the ’s follow-up activities can be expected in due course.

Javier Santamaría is the Chair of the .


Related links:

European Central Bank: ERPB Statement 29 June 2015 

European Central Bank Website: Information about Euro Retail Payments Board (ERPB)  

News: EPC Publishes Report on Instant Payments After Submission to the June 2015 Meeting of the Euro Retail Payments Board  

Blog: Update on work items addressed by the Euro Retail Payments Board (ERPB) chaired by the European Central Bank: SEPA Credit Transfer, SEPA Direct Debit, instant and mobile payment 


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