Today, the Payment Systems Regulator (PSR) publishes its response to the PSR Panel’s Digital Payments Initiative report.  

In May, the PSR published the PSR Panel’s report, which highlights the challenges to the take-up of digital payments and what the potential solutions and regulatory actions could look like. Following stakeholder roundtable discussions, the PSR has today set out where it will focus its attention in response to the report.  

Helping to remove barriers to new digital payment services, which better meet the needs of people who currently rely on cash, is a focus for the PSR. The Panel’s report focused on the potential for new open banking-based account-to-account payment services. It came up with 12 recommendations, covering open banking payments, the PSR’s Card Acquiring Market Review, improved data collection, digital identity and fraud prevention and protection.  

In addition, the report also highlighted reasons for cash reliance, such as lack of access to digital and financial infrastructure or lack of digital and financial skills, that cannot be addressed by new types of digital payment alone. Despite being unable to tackle the causes of digital exclusion, the PSR does have a role in challenging payment systems to consider people with limited digital and financial inclusion when designing and implementing digital payment services. That is where the PSR is focusing its attention. 

The PSR has considered and responded to each of the Panel’s recommendations, and also identified areas where the PSR is seeking consumer and broader stakeholder views.  

Kate Fitzgerald, Head of Policy (Interim) at the PSR said: 

“We know that making payments in ways that work for everyone is essential and there isn’t a one-size fits all approach to payments. That’s why making sure no one is left behind is incredibly important.  

“The Panel’s report highlighted important areas to address the take-up of digital payments. There are several recommendations on open banking payments, which is central to our Strategy. We will also explore with card and other payment system operators, as well as consumer representatives, what more can be done to meet the needs of those with limited digital and financial access or skills.”