Payments UK sets out vision for 'world class' services

Payments UK sets out vision for 'world class' services

Trade association Payments UK has vowed to improve access to payments infrastructure and give customers more control over transactions as part of a drive to ensure Britain has a "world class" system.

Earlier this year the bank-run Payments Council lost its powers to the new Payments Systems Regulator, prompting the one-all powerful organisation to morph into a trade association.

In its new role, under the Payments UK banner, the group has been gathering evidence on what changes consumers, businesses, charities, the public sector and the industry need from payments in the future.

Having looked into 13 potential features, the association has picked out four it says that the industry should priorities:

  • Access to the payments infrastructure for new and existing Payment Service Providers to help spur innovations such as real-time balance checks.
  • Enabling customers to confirm that the person they are paying is who they intend it to be, before they make the payment, to provide confidence it will not be sent to the wrong account.
  • Enabling greater control and flexibility over the timing of regular payments such as bills and providing an efficient e-invoicing and reconciliation capability for small businesses, charities, larger corporate users and government.
  • Enabling more and better information to be linked to payments. This will make it possible to provide additional reference information with an electronic payment helping businesses better reconcile payments. 

Payments UK says that how and when these things can be delivered will be worked out by regulators and industry in line with market demand but adds that its ideas should be part of the new PSR Payments Strategy Forum.

Tim Yudin, director, design and delivery, Payments UK, says: "Working closely with a wide range of stakeholders we have identified the features and functionalities that customers really want. I believe the first steps we have taken in our World Class Payments project have set out a clear vision and direction of travel: it is now vital that the industry, regulators, technology providers, the government and of course customers move forward together."

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