Many Banks Unaware That New EU Directive Will Slash International Payment Processing Profits
According to Odd Tuftin, R&D Director at CBA, Europe's leading developer of Java-based software for bank international payment End-to-End Straight Through Processing, many banks are still too complacent about a prevailing EU Directive and subsequent Regulations that will dramatically affect the amounts they can charge for international transactions.
The EU legislation, known as the Cross-Border Credit Transfers Directive 97/5/EC, came into effect in 1997. Together with later Regulations (for example "Regulation (EC) No 2560/2001 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 19 December 2001 on cross border payments in euro"), this legislation will require banks to cap their charges for international payment processing - so-called cross-border transactions - at the same level as for domestic payments. In 2001, the average charge for a cross-border transfer of 100 Euros between banks in EU Member States was 24 Euros.
Tuftin comments, 'Far too many banks are still unaware of the impact that this legislation will have on their businesses. At the moment, they can charge a market rate for processing their customers' international payments, but this is all set to change next year. And these institutions are leaving themselves precious little time to adapt their business practices to the new regime.'
Tuftin adds: 'Many of those banks that have examined the EU Directive are starting to panic as they realise that they have little choice but to invest in automated end-to-end straight through processing systems. Moreover, they haven't left enough time to modify existing systems, or develop new solutions in-house. Consequently, these banks are left with no alternative but to buy a proprietary STP solution, or outsource their entire payment processing.'
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