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New Payment System Operator takes on responsibility for the Bacs and Faster Payments systems

Operational responsibility for the Bacs and Faster Payments systems, which process a combined £6.3 trillion worth of payments annually, has transferred to the New Payment System Operator (NPSO).

The move ensures the continuity of operations of the UK’s main payment systems, which are relied on every day for thousands of salaries, benefits, bills, mortgage and other internet and mobile banking payments. Users of these payment systems will not have to do anything differently, all payments are being processed as usual.

The transfer of the operational responsibility and control for the Bacs and Faster Payments products and managed services occurs simultaneously with Bacs and Faster Payments schemes becoming subsidiary companies of the NPSO. Bringing the retail payment systems together is a key step in establishing a single voice for retail payments in the NPSO and will enable a vibrant economy, reduce complexity and risk and provide a platform for future competition and innovation.

Paul Horlock, Chief Executive of the New Payment System Operator, said: “Bacs and Faster Payments have developed a huge amount of trust in payments through the certainty, integrity and security inherent in their systems. The NPSO will maintain that stability and security whilst ensuring the continued relevance and competitiveness of the services we provide.

“This is our opportunity to create the future of retail payments in the UK, driving value for people and businesses and enabling a vibrant UK economy. We will be the leading payments authority that will create a best in class payment infrastructure and standards in the UK for the benefit of people everywhere.”

The NPSO was formed following the report from the Payment System Operator Delivery Group, an independently chaired body set up by the Payment Systems Regulator (PSR) and the Bank of England.

The Cheque & Credit Clearing Company Limited (C&CCC), which manages the paper processing system for cheques and incorporates  the recently launched  Image Clearing System (ICS), is also due to join the NPSO in the coming months along with UK Payments Administration Limited (UKPA), the company which provides people, facilities and business services to the payment ecosystem.

About the New Payment System Operator

The NPSO maintains and develops the payment systems and standards which are the lifeblood of the UK economy. We are the leading authority for payments, working in the public interest to ensure the payment systems the UK relies on for its banking are safe, open, innovative and resilient.

Every day, individuals and businesses use the services we provide to get their salaries, pay their bills and make online and mobile banking payments. We move more than £6.3 trillion every year, through Bacs Direct Credit, Direct Debit, Faster Payments, and Paym.

Our vision for the future is to enable a vibrant UK economy with the NPSO as the leading payment authority in the UK, delivering the best in class payment infrastructure and standards in the UK for the benefit of people everywhere.

Bacs Payment Schemes Limited, and Faster Payments Scheme Limited are wholly owned subsidiaries of NPSO Limited, which was incorporated on 18 July 2017 as a company limited by guarantee. The Cheque & Credit Clearing Company Limited and UK Payments Administration Limited will join the NPSO later in 2018.

About Bacs

Bacs has been maintaining the integrity of payment related services since 1968, with responsibility for the Direct Debit and Bacs Direct Credit payment schemes, as well as the provision of managed services such as the Cash ISA Transfer Service, and the Current Account Switch Service. Since its inception, more than 125 billion transactions have been debited or credited to British bank accounts via Bacs and, in 2017, 6.34 billion UK payments were made this way.

About Faster Payments

Faster Payments is the only UK payment system available day and night, 365 days per year, supporting the demands of personal and business customers, since its creation in 2008. In its last full year of operation (2017), Faster Payments processed 1.65 billion payment transactions with a value of £1,396 billion. Faster Payments also runs Paym, the UK’s mobile payments service, which makes it possible to pay friends, family and small businesses using just their mobile number.

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