In its role as catalyst, the Bank of Finland seeks to promote market development to ensure that payment solutions are efficient for society as a whole.

The Payments Council is a national cooperation body, created with the purpose of further developing retail payments. It brings together users and providers of payment services and the authorities, with the aim of supporting the use of advanced and internationally compatible forms of payment that are efficient for society as a whole. The reliability and efficiency of payment systems depends on the smooth cooperation between all the participants in the payment chain. The Payments Council ensures that the views of payment service users and providers as well as of the authorities are taken into account in discussions on future payment solutions. This is particularly important in view of the ongoing internationalisation of payment systems. The Payments Council is also the national counterpart to the Euro Retail Payments Board, ERPB.

The Payments Council analyses and assesses changes in the operating environment, current payment initiatives and the impact of regulation. It contributes to the development of payments by publishing assessments and conclusions, for example at the annual Payments Forum. The Payments Council publishes an annual report on its work. Responsibility for the practical organisation of its work lies with the Bank of Finland. The following bodies participate in the work of the Payments Council: the Confederation of Finnish Industries, the Finnish Federation for Communications and Teleinformatics (FiCom), Finance Finland, the Social Insurance Institution of Finland (Kela), the Finnish Commerce Federation, the Finnish Competition and Consumer Authority, The Consumers' Union of Finland, Nordea Bank Finnish Branch, OP Financial Group, the Federation of Finnish Enterprises, the Ministry of Employment and the Economy, the Prime Minister's Office, the Ministry of Finance and the Bank of Finland.