Payments & securities

The tasks of the Eurosystem

The Eurosystem has the statutory task of promoting the smooth operation of payment and settlement systems (see Article 127(2) of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union and Articles 3 and 22 of the Statute of the European System of Central Banks and of the European Central Bank).

The Eurosystem fulfils its tasks by means of the following.

  • It provides payment and securities settlement facilities, operating a large-value payment system in euro (TARGET2), as well as a mechanism allowing the cross-border use of collateral (CCBM). Moreover, the Eurosystem is also setting up a pan-European service (T2S) to allow central securities depositories to settle securities transactions using central bank money.
  • It establishes oversight policies and corresponding standards for large-value payment systems, retail payment systems and payment instruments, clearing systems, securities settlement systems and certain third-party service providers. It also conducts oversight activities for these infrastructures, assessing their compliance with such policies and standards and, where necessary, induces change.
  • It establishes business continuity requirements for market infrastructures and coordinates implementation work.
  • It monitors and, where necessary, develops a stance on market developments and legal initiatives affecting the oversight of infrastructures and arrangements for payments, clearing and securities settlement.
  • It acts as a catalyst for change, promoting efficiency in payment systems and, in the field of retail payments, migration to the Single Euro Payments Area. It also promotes an efficient securities market by fostering the harmonisation of market standards and encouraging the removal of barriers to integration.