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SCT Inst uptake surpasses 1,000 PSPs, 25% of European total


The latest statistics from the European Payments Council (EPC), designers of the single euro payments area (SEPA) instant credit transfer (SCT Inst) scheme, show that 1,043 payment service providers (PSPs) from 13 countries, 25% of the total in Europe, have so far registered as participants.

The latest figures are an improvement from the launch date of 21 November 2017 when 585 PSPs, 15% of the total, were offering instant euro payment services in eight countries.

The voluntary SCT Inst scheme mandates less than 10 second delivery across the 34 SEPA countries on a constant 24×7 operational basis. The upward trending figures are encouraging, but it is not expected that more than half of all European banks and PSPs will be participants until 2019. How uptake looks next year, and indeed next decade, will no doubt be closely monitored to see how voluntary participation is progressing.

The latest EPC uptake figures have been compiled into a very useful infographic, which shows the breakdown of participating PSPs on a per country basis across Europe when clicked upon. Updates will be made on a monthly basis, but some of the standout SCT Inst bank and PSP uptake figures so far include:

  • Austria – 470 PSPs
  • Germany – 404 PSPs
  • Italy – 19 PSPs
  • Spain – 86 PSPs
  • & France – 49 PSPs. According to the EPC the BPCE cooperative banking group led the way in France at the turn of the year becoming the first compliant instant payment provider.

Other countries presently on single figure adoption rates include Latvia (3 PSPs); Lithuania (3); Estonia (2); Malta (1); the Netherlands (3); Bulgaria (1); and Belgium (1 PSP).

It is important to note the proviso that not all those self-certifying as PSP participants are immediately offering SCT Inst-compliant services. There may be a slight time-lag with the EPC commenting in its update announcement some SCT Inst services will follow “a bit later”. Nevertheless, these are the best figures the payment industry has and they’re increasing rapidly.

The CSM landscape 
The PSP figures are buttressed by similarly useful statistics showing the number of EPC-registered clearing and settlement mechanisms (CSMs) that offer SCT Inst-compliant national and cross-border processing platforms is on the up, sometimes achieving pan-European functionality via partnerships.

The latest EPC CSM figures will show an increase to 10 CSMs on 3 April when Portugal’s national SIPS FPS platform is due to join offering its processing services to PSPs.

  • Separately, EBA Clearing’s RT1 CSM platform announced its latest usage figures this week as well, showing that it broke through the half a million transaction barrier on 19 February. It has processed EUR300m worth of SCT Inst transactions so far, with 95% of them taking just three seconds to clear.


Author: Neil Ainger