Payments community calls on Open Banking to do more to enable access for FinTechs

The Emerging Payments Association (EPA) has written to the Open Banking Implementation Entity (OBIE) calling for the OBIE to amend the terms of the CMA’s framework so that emerging payments organisations can realise the potential of Open Banking.

The EPA’s ‘Open Letter’ represents the views of many EPA members, sharing their concerns about the barriers that could inhibit FinTechs from engaging with Open Banking. EPA members believe that the nine banks currently covered by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) framework have displayed varying levels of enthusiasm in embracing certain aspects of Open Banking, with some described as striving to meet the letter, rather than the spirit, of Open Banking.

The Open Letter, supported by the EPA Advisory Board and the association’s 130+ members, covers several EPA members’ concerns, including;
1) Banks’ compliance with Open Banking
2) Public perception and consumer protection
3) API standards
4) Data standards
5) Customer journeys
6) Scope of Open Banking

EPA members urge the OBIE to elaborate on the detail behind the framework it has implemented. Members seek more clarity for both banks and Third Party Providers (TPPs) about the services and obligations that will create the desired ‘open’ customer experience.

Furthermore, EPA members believe that there is a lack of understanding about, and trust in, Open Banking from both consumers, and TPPs. This lack of understanding and trust are a significant obstacle to customer uptake. To overcome this obstacle, the EPA believes it is essential improve the messaging around Open Banking and to provide certainty and protection to customers.

Tony Craddock, Director General of the EPA, commented, “Just having Open Banking will not stimulate innovation on its own. You have to collaborate to stimulate innovation. This Open Letter highlights what is missing from Open Banking and what needs to be done now to ensure its success. We hope it will enable collaboration between the EPA’s progressive payments companies and Open Banking. I believe that everyone using and facilitating payments will benefit.”