"The Council General approach on the revised Payment Services Directive marks another step towards creating a more secure, competitive and consumer-friendly rules for payments in Europe," said Jonathan Hill, the EU Commissioner for Financial Stability, Financial Services and Capital Markets Union. "It is important to now find a compromise with the European Parliament so the new rules can come into force: they will help to build a genuine digital single market and increase consumers'confidence in online payments. Not least, they will make those payments cheaper."
The European Commission proposed a revised Payment Services Directive as part of its payment package in July 2013. Although significant progress has been made in integrating retail payments in the EU into the current legislative framework on payments, several important areas of the payments market – such as card, internet and mobile payments - are still fragmented along national borders.
The proposal aims to 1) Increase consumer protection against fraud, possible abuses and payment incidents through enhanced security requirements that make strong customer authentication for online payments compulsory 2) Promote competition through the emergence of new players and the development of innovative mobile and internet payments in Europe and 3) Modernise the legislative framework for retail payments in Europe.
In addition, the European Banking Auhority (EBA) will be asked to issue guidelines and draft regulatory technical standards in various fields, for example to ensure the establishment of adequate security measures or in order to clarify the rules on ‘passporting’ for payment institutions operating in several Member. Passporting would allow firms to conduct business anywhere in the EU if they fulfil the conditions under relevant EU rules.
Today's agreement in the Council follows the European Parliament vote of 3 April 2014 on its report on the revised Payment Services Directive. The Council agreement will kick off trialogue negotiations to finalise the revised payments legislation. The proposed update of the legislation will have to be adopted by the European Parliament and the Council of Ministers under the ordinary legislative procedure.