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The European Payments Council Releases SEPA Cards Standardisation Requirements for Public Consultation

by david.nunes

The European Payments Council Releases SEPA Cards Standardisation Requirements for Public Consultation


6 June 2011 – Brussels: the European Payments Council (EPC) and the Cards Stakeholders Group released the latest version of the SEPA Cards Standardisation Volume – Book of Requirements for public consultation. The SEPA Cards Standardisation Volume defines the functional and security standards requirements needed to achieve interoperability based on open and free standards within the Single Euro Payments Area (SEPA) cards market. The EPC and the Cards Stakeholders Group call on industry stakeholders to review the recent revisions and provide feedback by 29 July 2011.


The EPC, representing the European banking industry in relation to payments, carries out a card standardisation programme designed to achieve a consistent customer experience, high levels of security and optimum process efficiency throughout the SEPA cards market. In 2009, the EPC promoted the creation of the Cards Stakeholders Group together with representatives of five sectors also active in the cards domain including retailers, vendors – such as manufacturer of card payment devices and related IT systems – processors, card schemes and banks. The Cards Stakeholders Group develops the SEPA Cards Standardisation Volume. The European Economic and Financial Affairs Council (ECOFIN), which comprises the Finance Ministers of European Union Member States, requested in its conclusions on SEPA in December 2009 that industry sets the conditions for further standardisation in the area of cards.


Version 5.5 of the SEPA Cards Standardisation Volume has recently been updated by the Cards Stakeholders Group and is currently undergoing public consultation. This version includes updates with regard to security requirements, payment with cashback, dynamic currency conversion, mobile contactless payments, payment with aggregated amount and surcharging.


Gerard Hartsink, EPC Chair, comments: “Creating the Cards Stakeholders Group allows pinpointing the expectations of a broad range of payment card stakeholders. It also ensures a strong co-management in the process of identifying standard requirements and implementation best practices that will promote interoperability in the SEPA cards market. Our collective aim is to establish a framework for a better, safer, more cost efficient and richer card services environment, whatever the card product or scheme may be. We call on all stakeholders to engage in this public consultation and provide feedback on these amendments to ensure the most effective transaction technology and processes are adopted, which will ultimately benefit all stakeholders.” 


The EPC and the Cards Stakeholders Group invite stakeholders to provide feedback to version 5.5 of the SEPA Cards Standardisation Volume by 29 July 2011. Visit the EPC Website for further details and to download the required documentation.




Media Contact at the EPC: For further media information, please contact Meral Ruesing at the EPC Secretariat (Phone +32 2 733 35 33 or e-mail meral.ruesing@epc-cep.eu).

About the European Payments Council:

The European Payments Council (EPC) is the coordination and decision-making body of the European banking industry in relation to payments. The purpose of the EPC is to support and promote the Single Euro Payments Area (SEPA). SEPA is an EU integration initiative in the area of payments designed to achieve the completion of the EU internal market and monetary union. SEPA is the area where citizens, companies and other economic actors can make and receive payments in euro, throughout Europe, whether within or across national boundaries under the same basic conditions, rights and obligations, regardless of their location. SEPA is currently defined as consisting of the EU 27 Member States plus Iceland, Norway, Liechtenstein, Switzerland and Monaco. The EPC develops the payment schemes and frameworks necessary to realise SEPA. In particular, the EPC defines common positions for the cooperative space of payment services, provides strategic guidance for standardisation, formulates rules, best practices and standards and supports and monitors implementation of decisions taken. The EPC consists of 74 members representing banks, banking communities and payment institutions. More than 360 professionals from 32 countries are directly engaged in the work programme of the EPC, representing all sizes and sectors of the banking industry within Europe.

Source: European Payments Council

Av de Tervueren 12 B – 1040 Brussels – Phone + 32 2 733 35 33 – Fax + 32 2 736 49 88

Email: secretariat@epc-cep.eu – URL: www.epc-cep.eu

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