When payments run smoothly nobody pays attention to them. Payments are a fundamental part of almost all financial transactions, which is why their reliability and security should be ensured under all circumstances. The themes of the Payments Forum arranged by the Bank of Finland today are changes in the provision of financial services, real-time payments and payment security.

“Digitalisation will increasingly reshape the landscape of financial services with the entry of new actors, products and operating models. For this reason, the rules pertaining to financial services and companies providing such services should be reviewed critically,” emphasises Olli Rehn, Governor of the Bank of Finland, in his opening remarks to the Payments Forum.

Governor Rehn stresses the importance of decisive action to address the acute problem of over-indebtedness. “Besides regulation concerning interest rates, the payday loan market needs restrictions with respect to marketing. In addition, financial literacy needs to be enhanced further in cooperation with all actors in the field. Preparation of a national strategy for financial literacy would provide a more solid foundation for cooperation,” underlines Governor Rehn.

The Payments Forum also sees the publication of the Payments Council report on real-time payments. Instant payments have not yet achieved a fundamental breakthrough in Finland. The report proposes that stakeholders be given the possibility for adequate cooperation within the limits allowed by competition rules. This would enable commitment to one or more instant payment systems that are available to all. All recommendations of the working group are presented in the Payments Council report entitled ‘Payments going real-time in Finland’.

The Bank of Finland’s Payments Forum is being held today for the 13th time. The Payments Forum fosters dialogue and discussions between payment service users, providers and the authorities on topical issues relating to payments.

For further information, please contact Kari Kemppainen, Senior Adviser, tel. + 358 9 183 2251.