Search Options
Home Media Explainers Research & Publications Statistics Monetary Policy The €uro Payments & Markets Careers
Sort by

Revision of the Regulation on oversight requirements for systemically important payment systems (the SIPS Regulation)

27 November 2020

On 27 November 2020 the Eurosystem published its proposed amendments to Regulation of the European Central Bank (EU) No 795/2014 of 3 July 2014 on oversight requirements for systemically important payment systems (ECB/2014/28) (the SIPS Regulation) for public consultation.

The SIPS Regulation sets out the oversight requirements for both large-value and retail payment systems of systematic importance. It applies to payment systems operated both by central banks and by private operators. The Regulation aims to enhance the safety and efficiency of systemically important payment systems (SIPS) and, by regulating the individual systems, to limit systemic risk and safeguard the stability of the overall financial system. The Regulation covers all aspects of the organisational set-up and operation of a SIPS, including legal basis, governance, liquidity and credit risk, operational risk, access and participation criteria, and disclosure.

The following three amendments to the SIPS Regulation are being proposed:

First, it is proposed to clearly set out the criteria for determining which of the Eurosystem central banks is to be designated as the competent authority for conducting the oversight of a SIPS. In exceptional circumstances where a pan-European payment system has been overseen by a national central bank (NCB) for five years or more prior to becoming a SIPS, it would also be possible under the proposal to designate two competent authorities, i.e. the European Central Bank (ECB) and an NCB. This would require further technical amendments to two implementing decisions in order to clarify how the oversight activities would be exercised when two competent authorities are designated.

Second, in the light of fast-moving technological trends and changing consumer preferences which may fundamentally change the way payments are made, it is considered important to ensure that all relevant factors can be taken into account when assessing the systemic importance of a payment system. One such factor is the nature and importance of the payment system’s participants. Therefore, one of the proposed amendments is that, alongside the existing criteria for the classification of a payment system as a SIPS, an additional, flexible and forward-looking methodology for the identification of a payment system as a SIPS should also be put in place.

Third, it is proposed to introduce a phasing-out period prior to reclassifying a SIPS as a non-SIPS, i.e. SIPS status would be withdrawn only after the payment system concerned has not met the SIPS identification criteria for two years in a row as assessed in the verification exercises. The possibility of earlier reclassification based on a case-by-case evaluation should also be provided for where it is unlikely that the payment system would fulfil the criteria for classification as a SIPS in the next verification exercise.

The public consultation offers interested parties the opportunity to comment on the revised SIPS Regulation and on the two implementing decisions by 18:00 CET on 8 January 2021. The ECB will assess all comments received and amend the documents as appropriate. The final versions of the revised legal acts will be published together with a summary of the consultation feedback (including individual responses where agreed by the respondent).