12th March 2019

EPC board votes in favour of UK’s continued participation in SEPA

The European Payments Council (EPC) has confirmed that UK-based providers will be able to continue participating in the Single Euro Payments Area (SEPA) in the event of a ‘no-deal’ Brexit, following the application by UK Finance.

This decision means that UK consumers and businesses will be able to make and receive payments and hold bank accounts in euros beyond 29 March, 2019, whatever the outcome of the government’s negotiations with the EU.

Had the UK been excluded from SEPA, it “could have made euro payments from the UK less efficient and more costly for customers”. The decision was welcomed by the wider financial world and was “music to the ears of the UK Fintech sector”.

Stephen Jones, UK Finance CEO, said: “The European Payments Council board’s vote in favour of the UK’s continued participation in the Single Euro Payment Area is an important milestone.[The] decision ensures that in the event of a ‘no-deal’ Brexit, UK payment service providers will still be able to make and receive payments from other European countries that are part of SEPA.

“This is a positive outcome for consumers and businesses on both sides of the Channel who rely on the SEPA schemes to make billions of euros worth of payments each year. We now look forward to continuing to engage closely with our partners in Europe on improving the payment experience for customers and businesses alike.”