Electronic Funds Transfer: Fees and Charges

Treasury written question – answered on 28th October 2021.

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Photo of Stephen Timms Stephen Timms Chair, Work and Pensions Committee, Chair, Work and Pensions Committee

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what plans he has to ensure all payment service providers publish the total costs they charge, including sending and receiving fees, costs charged by any intermediaries, foreign exchange rate and currency conversion charges; and if he will make a statement.

Photo of Stephen Timms Stephen Timms Chair, Work and Pensions Committee, Chair, Work and Pensions Committee

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what plans he has to enforce cross border payments price transparency in line with the Cross Border Payments Regulation 2; and if he will make a statement.

Photo of John Glen John Glen Minister of State (Treasury) (City), The Economic Secretary to the Treasury

The Government recognises the importance of transparency of fees and charges in ensuring effective competition between payment service providers.

The Payment Services Regulations 2017 make several requirements on UK payment service providers regarding disclosure of fees and charges to the payer, for example, the exchange rate used for a currency conversion transaction. Provisions under the Cross Border Payments Regulation, which continue to apply in the UK as part of retained EU law, also contribute to price transparency, with further requirements regarding how foreign exchange costs are communicated before a payment is made.

These regulations, amongst other things, are intended to enable consumers to make informed decisions when making use of payment services including where currency conversion is offered. The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) is the relevant regulatory authority with responsibility for monitoring and enforcing these requirements. Should the FCA have concerns regarding firms’ compliance with the requirements, it will take appropriate action as necessary.

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