The European Parliament has agreed to the European Commission revised Directive on Payment Services or the so called Payments Services Directive (PSD2).
This new law, proposed by the European Commission in July 2013, enhances consumer protection, promotes
innovation and improves the security of payment services. PSD2 is the latest in a series of laws recently adopted by the EU in order to provide for modern, efficient and cheap payment services and to enhance protection for European consumers and businesses.
Commissioner Jonathan Hill, responsible for Financial Stability, Financial Services and Capital Markets Union, said: “European consumers want to know that their payments are safe when they shop or make a payment online. The new Payment Services Directive will ensure that electronic payments in Europe become more secure and more convenient for European shoppers.
This legislation is a step towards a digital single market; it will benefit consumers and businesses, and help the economy grow. I want to thank the European Parliament for the work it has put into reaching this agreement, and pay tribute to the work of rapporteur Antonio Tajani, Vice-President of the European Parliament.”
Commissioner Margrethe Vestager, responsible for competition policy, said: “We have already used EU competition rules to ensure that new and innovative players can compete for digital payment services alongside banks and other traditional providers.
Today’s vote by the Parliament builds on this by providing a legislative framework to facilitate the entry of such new players and ensure they provide secure and efficient payment services. The new Directive will greatly benefit European consumers by making it easier to shop online and enabling new services to enter the market to manage their bank accounts, for example to keep track of their spending on different accounts”.
Following the Parliament’s vote, the Directive will be formally adopted by the EU Council of Ministers in the near future. The Directive will then be published in the Official Journal of the EU. From that date, Member States will have two years to introduce the necessary changes in their national laws in order to comply with the new rules.
Some of the changes that the new rules introduce are:
- Introduction of strict security requirements for the initiation and processing of electronic payments and the protection of consumers’ financial data;
- Opening the EU payment market for companies offering consumer or business-oriented payment services based on the access to information about the payment account – the so called “payment initiation services providers” and “account information services providers”;
- Enhancing consumers’ rights in numerous areas, including reducing the liability for non-authorised payments, introducing an unconditional (“no questions asked”) refund right for direct debits in euro; and
- Prohibition of surcharging (additional charges for the right to pay e.g. with a card) whether the payment instrument is used in shops or online.
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