EBA Clearing has launched a task force to lay the groundwork for a Europe-wide instant payment processing service it hopes to have up and running by 2018.
The move is in response to a call for action by the Euro Retail Payments Board (ERPB), which has expressed concern that the emergence of new domestic platforms, such as the UK's Faster Payments scheme, might end up creating a fragmented market in Europe for instant payments, similar to what existed in regular payments in the past.
Taking its cue from the ECB, the ERPB says there is a need for at least one pan-European instant payment solution for the euro open to any payment service provider (PSP) in the EU, and has invited the supply side of the industry to develop an open and competitive market for instant payments in Europe.
EBA Clearing is throwing its hat in the ring, gathering around 20 experts from its userbase for a task force that first met last week to develop a roadmap and blueprint for the required deliverables.
Erkki Poutiainen, chairman, EBA Clearing, says: "We have resolved to contribute to the supply side effort that a Europe-wide move to instant payments will require and we feel that a pan-European collaborative effort is the best way forward to respond positively to the call for action by the ERPB and the ECB."
Poutiainen says that the plan is to set out options by the middle of this year so that PSPs can take them into consideration during 2016 budget planning.
EBA Clearing is not alone in coveting a space in the instant payments market. Belgian-based financial messaging network Swift is also exploring how best to deploy these capabilities as a standardised platform across multiple markets after bagging its first contract in Australia last year.