Today the European Payments Council (EPC) is launching a public consultation on the draft rulebook of its new SEPA Payment Account Access (SPAA) Scheme and on a related document concerning a possible additional ‘premium’ functionality that would allow asset brokers to request a payment with transaction fees not borne by the Payer. The consultation will run for a 90-calendar day period from 13 June 2022 up to and including 12 September 2022.
The SPAA scheme, which is created in line with the requirements defined in the June 2021 report of the Euro Retail Payments Board (ERPB) Working Group on a SEPA Application Programming Interface (API) Access scheme, covers the set of rules, practices and standards that will allow the exchange of payment accounts related data and facilitates the initiation of payment transactions in the context of ‘value-added’ (‘premium’) services provided by asset holders (i.e. Account-Servicing Payment Service Providers (ASPSPs)) to asset brokers (e.g. Third Party Providers (TPPs)).
The aim of the SPAA scheme is to drive ‘open payments’ in the EU in a way that unlocks and creates value whilst allowing for a fair distribution of value and risk between scheme participants.
The SPAA scheme covers messaging functionalities. It is not about a payment means or a payment instrument, but it offers a way to transport information in relation to payment accounts and transactions.
It is envisaged that the SPAA scheme will evolve further over time to support more elaborated functionalities, in line with market demand.
The draft SPAA scheme rulebook and the related document are the outcome of the work carried out to date by the SPAA Multi-Stakeholder Group set up and facilitated by the EPC .
Key benefits behind the SPAA scheme include:
- It builds on investments done in the context of the revised Payment Services Directive (PSD2).
- Managed as a scheme and developed collaboratively by the retail payment industry (supply and demand) as represented in the ERPB.
- It enables ‘premium’ payment services beyond PSD2 in a way ensuring harmonisation, interoperability and reachability across Europe.
- Asset holders expose data and transactional assets through the scheme to asset brokers for a fee, with prior consent from the asset owner (i.e. a consumer or a legal entity).
- It takes into account the input from major European standardisation initiatives active in the field of ‘PSD2 APIs’.
- It could be a stepping-stone towards ‘open finance’ beyond payments and ‘open data’ beyond finance.
All interested stakeholders are invited to participate in the public consultation by sending their feedback on the draft SPAA scheme rulebook and on the related document concerning a possible additional ‘premium’ functionality via e-mail to [email protected] by 12 September 2022 (midnight Brussels time) at the latest. Kindly note that the EPC will not consider any feedback received after this deadline. To submit your feedback on the draft rulebook, please use the response template (EPC112-22) (see “related document”). To provide your input on the possible additional ‘premium’ functionality, please use the table included in document EPC123-22 (section 4).
The publication of the formal first version of the SPAA scheme rulebook is foreseen by end November 2022 (subject to EPC Board approval). The SPAA scheme itself is expected to enter into force in November 2023 (to be confirmed).
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