Saturday, September 23, 2006

ECB speech on SEPA for cards: a contribution to a cashless society?

This week Mrs Gertrude Tumpel-Gugerell, Member of the Executive Board of the ECB spoke at the EFMA Cards and Payments Conference in Paris, using these slides.

Now, what is interesting is that the Eurosystem claims to be neutral towards the different models for the cards market in Europe (slide 14) but then goes on to state that 'competition needs to be ensured':
• SEPA should mean more than two schemes....
• International card schemes and national schemes have a role to play

Now this leads to the following questions:
- how did the Eurosystem suddenly become responsible for competition issues...?
- why don't the competition authorities speak up to put the Eurosystem back in the monetary corner where they belong?