Non-bank payment service providers to gain access to settlement accounts at the Bank of England

The Bank of England is extending access to settlement accounts in its real-time gross settlement (RTGS) system to non-bank payment service providers, enabling direct access to the UK’s sterling payment systems. In doing so, the Bank of England aims to promote innovation and competition in the payments sector.

The FCA is responsible for the regulation of non-bank payment service providers under the Payment Services Regulations 2009 and Electronic Money Regulations 2011. The FCA, HM Revenue and Customs and HM Treasury have been working alongside the Bank of England to develop a framework for non-bank payment service providers to access RTGS.

Under this framework non-bank payment service providers applying for RTGS access will be subject to a supervisory assessment by us. Applications will first need to be reviewed by the payment schemes and the Bank of England.

They will then be referred to us at the appropriate point. Furthermore, once accepted for access to RTGS, non-bank payment service providers will then be subject to on-going strengthened supervisory oversight from us.

For further details on how to apply, a non-bank payment service provider should contact the relevant payment scheme it wishes to join.