Instant payments: Commission launches public consultation on measures to promote instant payments

The European Commission has today launched a public consultation to feed into the reflection on obstacles and possible enabling measures to ensure a wide availability and use of instant payments in the EU. Instant payments allow funds to be available to the recipient within seconds, 24 hours a day, every day of the year, including weekends and public holidays. The full take-up of instant payments would also facilitate the emergence of competitive home-grown and pan–European payment solutions, in line with the objectives of the EU’s open strategic autonomy. This consultation follows up on the Commission’s ‘Retail Payments Strategy in the EU‘. This Strategy aims to bring more choice in safe, fast and reliable payment services to European citizens and businesses. It will make it easier for consumers to pay in shops and make e-commerce transactions safely and conveniently. It seeks to achieve a fully integrated retail payments system in the EU, including instant cross-border payment solutions. This will also facilitate payments in euro between the EU and other jurisdictions. The Retail Payments Strategy lists a number of possible actions to promote the emergence of home-grown and pan–European payment solutions. Mairead McGuinness, Commissioner for Financial Services, Financial Stability and Capital Markets Union, said: “Citizens and companies want to use convenient, secure and cost-efficient payment solutions that work throughout the EU. Instant payments are one of the technologies that can enable EU payment service providers to offer such solutions. By contributing to this public consultation, you can have your say on issues relevant to the development of instant payments in the EU.” The public consultation will run for 12 weeks. You can have your say here.