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29 November 2018 / news

BankBit: ACM reiterates warning not to exclude fintechs

The Dutch Authority for Consumers & Markets (ACM) published a speech of one of its board members, Mrs. Hijmans van den Bergh, in relation to competition on the payment services market.

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In the speech the ACM indicates to have high expectations of the new Payment Services Directive (PSD2) and that it will aim to prevent the exclusion of fintechs by established players.

Mrs. Hijmans van den Bergh started her speech by highlighting some successes of the Convenant Betalingsverkeer 2005-2018 (an agreement between several stakeholders). A sharp decrease in transaction costs, the introduction of the EMV-chip on debit cards and other initiatives have led to a sharp increase in the number of electronic payments.

Mrs. Hijmans also gave her outlook for the future. She remarked that the ACM has high expectations of the impact that PSD2 could have on the market for payment services, as PSD2 allows consumers to provide third parties access to their bank account information. This potentially leads to the introduction of new and innovative (payment) services from new market entrants. In this respect, she mentioned that the ACM already concluded that there is a genuine risk that established players may try to exclude fintech companies from the market for payment services as they have an incentive to do so (for ACM’s reasoning, reference is made to our previous Bankbit).

Mrs. Hijmans van den Bergh reiterated that the ACM will continue to monitor the market closely in order to prevent such exclusions from occurring. Where standards for access are being developed, these should be non-exclusionary. She also noted that national initiatives may not lead to the division of the EU internal market along national boundaries, as this may breach EU competition law.

The speech of the ACM can be found here.

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