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29 July 2014

European Payments Council Newsletter July 2014

The Single Euro Payments Area (SEPA) remains a work in progress. The July 2014 edition of the EPC Newsletter offers in-depth information on regulatory action now in the pipeline intended to bring about ‘SEPA 2.0’.

SEPA compliance requirements are determined by the European Union (EU) institutions. These are the European Commission, the European Parliament, the Council of the EU representing EU governments and the European Central Bank. Going forward, the institutional SEPA landscape will become even more complex: in future, the newly established Euro Retail Payments Board chaired by the European Central Bank and the European Banking Authority will also play a role in shaping SEPA.

This edition of the EPC Newsletter also analyses the latest considerations of the EU lawmakers concerning the proposed revised Payment Services Directive (PSD2). The draft PSD2 text agreed by the European Parliament in April 2014 as well as the compromise texts issued in June and July 2014, respectively, by the Presidency of the Council of the EU introduce several changes to the proposal tabled by the European Commission in July 2013. In the view of the EPC, additional amendments will have to be agreed in the further dialogue between the EU co-legislators to ensure, in particular, the security of bank customers’ funds and data with payment account access services under the forthcoming PSD2.

EPC also take a closer look at the role of the European Commission and the European Central Bank, respectively, with regard to the evolution and the operation of the SEPA Credit Transfer and SEPA Direct Debit Schemes. It is important to keep in mind that the EPC carries out the scheme management function subject to legal and regulatory conditions defined by the EU authorities.

Last but not least: the extended period to achieve compliance in the euro area with Regulation (EU) No 260/2012 concludes on 1 August 2014. It is important that countries in- and outside of the euro area do not overlook the next SEPA deadlines established by EU law applicable in 2016. This EPC Newsletter shares best practices identified in the euro area during the migration process. The recommendation is to take these into consideration when preparing for SEPA 2016.

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