The compromise package finds large support among Council delegations. However, still outstanding issues concern the multi-lateral interchange fee and the reachability obligation for direct debit transactions.
The Presidency has proposed a compromise package for the draft regulation on cross-border payments. Although the decision in Parliament is still outstanding and a few reservations were made, the compromise package finds large support among Council delegations.
The outstanding issues concern the introduction in the compromise package of:
a. An Multilateral Interchange Fee (MIF) of EUR 0.088 for cross-border direct debit transactions (Article 5a) to be applied to each cross-border direct debit transaction, until 31 October 2012, "in the absence of any bilateral agreement between the payment service provider of the payee and the payment service provider of the payer." This fee will be payable by the payment service provider of the payee to the payment service provider of the payer and would apply for each cross-border direct debit transaction, unless a lower (or the absence of a) fee would have been agreed upon between the payment service providers concerned. Not all Member States currently apply MIFs. The open question is whether cross border direct debit interchange fees should be fixed (or limited) by regulation, or market driven.
b. A Reachability obligation for direct debit transactions (Article 5c), at the latest 1 year after the entry into force of the new regulation. A payment service provider of a payer which is reachable for a national direct debit transaction denominated in euro on the payment account of that payer should also become reachable for direct debit transactions in euro initiated by a payee through a payment service provider located in any Member State. This aimed at facilitating the implementation of the SEPA direct debit scheme which is scheduled to be launched in November 2009.
c. A transitional period as regards compliance with the Reachability obligation for direct debit transactions, for those Member States which do not have the euro as their national currency (Article 5c(4)). Some Member States still hold scrutiny reservations on the length of the transitional period.
The compromise text is attached below
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