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European payment means: threats to European card systems

At 15 days from the start to the SEPA*, the French Banking Federation (FBF) notes that the European Commission has ruled against the interchange fees on cross-border transactions applied by an international debit card system.

By eliminating the mechanism which forms the basis of card systems such as they have been developed in Europe to the general satisfaction of consumers, this decision not only threatens the economic viability of existing systems but, above all, freezes any potential new investments therein. Indeed, the decision is in clear contradiction with the very notion of a Single Euro Payments Area which aims to remove country borders and thereby foster greater competition with the emergence of new players.

The consequences of this decision will weigh heavily on consumers in the long term as it compromises the efficient and secure national systems upon which they have come to rely in a highly competitive arena that is open to all banks.

The development of a euro payments area will never be possible if Commission rulings on acceptable fees are only taken after the fact, i.e. once the systems have been developed and are in place.

Accordingly, the FBF requests that the European Commission clearly and explicitly outline the provisions and rules that will allow for an efficient euro payments area.

*Single Euro Payments Area


Colette Cova
email : ccova@fbf.fr
Tel : 01 48 00 50 07

Kenza Benqeddi
email : kbenqeddi@fbf.fr
Tel : 01 48 00 50 08

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