The Credit Transfer () and Direct Debit () Schemes evolve based on a transparent change management process, which provides all stakeholders with the opportunity to introduce suggestions for changes to the Single European Payments Area () Schemes. The principles governing the evolution of the Schemes are set out in section three of the Scheme Management Internal Rules (see 'related links' below). The annual change management cycle follows a set schedule.
As a first step, the European Payments Council () invited stakeholders to submit suggestions for changes to the payment schemes by the end of February 2011. In consideration of the suggestions received, the Payments Working Group (SPS WG) develops a single change request per rulebook. The preparation of the change request involves analysis of the suggestions for changes received, including a cost-benefit analysis, dialogue with the initiator and, if appropriate, market research. Based on this analysis, the SPS WG decides whether to accept a suggestion for change into the change management process or not.
Initiators of any suggestions for changes are notified of the decision taken by the SPS WG. All suggestions to modify the rulebooks received by the - irrespective of whether they have been accepted into the change management process - are published on the Website, permitting such a list to be openly viewed by all stakeholders.
The change requests will be released for a three month public consultation in May 2011.
Taking into account comments received during the consultation, the SPS WG completes a change proposal for approval by the Plenary in September 2011.
To ensure planning security for all market participants, publication of the updated rulebooks follows a predictable rulebook release management cycle. In accordance with industry best practice, payment service providers and their suppliers have a one year lead time to address rulebook updates prior to such updates taking effect. The publishes updated versions of the rulebooks annually in November 2011. The updated versions then take effect in the third week of November 2012, to allow for alignment with SWIFT message releases.
As a result of this annual change cycle, the and Schemes incorporate numerous features introduced by end users.
Javier Santamaría is the Chair of the Payment Schemes Working Group.
What is a Payment Scheme? - Dedicated page on the Website
SEPA Credit Transfer - Dedicated page on the Website
SEPA Direct Debit - Dedicated page on the Website
Scheme Management Internal Rules - Extract - Chapter three (this chapter describes the principles governing scheme development)
Related articles in this issue:
The SEPA Regulation - A Progress Report. First reactions by European Parliament and Council of the European Union introduce important improvements to European Commission's proposal for a SEPA Regulation
Related articles in previous issues:
The Good, the Bad, the Ugly and a Knight in Shining Armour? European Commission requests unprecedented powers to determine payment functionalities ( Newsletter, Issue 9, January 2011)
So what's in a Name? Explaining payment schemes, instruments and systems. Clarity on payment terms is critical in the debate over the approach to setting end dates for migration to SEPA through EU Regulation ( Newsletter, Issue 8, October 2010)
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