SEPA

SEPA (Single Euro Payments Area)

The Single Euro Payment Area (SEPA) is the area in which citizens, companies and other economic agents can make and receive payments in euros in Europe, within and beyond their own national borders, under the same conditions and with the same rights and obligations, regardless of where they are.

The SEPA payment instruments are transfers and direct debits.

The Single Euro Payments Area (SEPA) was created in 2007 to facilitate payments in euros across a supranational geographical area. It is an area in which citizens, businesses and other economic agents can make and receive payments in euros within Europe, inside and outside national borders, under the same conditions and with the same rights and obligations, regardless of where they are located.

SEPA is the European payment system based on common instruments, standards, procedures and infrastructure. In this harmonised scenario, no distinctions are made between domestic and international payments, all of which are processed with the same ease, speed, security and efficiency.

In the SEPA geographical area, citizens, businesses and other economic agents are able to make and receive payments in euros, both within and outside national borders, under the same conditions and with the same rights and obligations, regardless of where they are located. This fact facilitates access to new markets.

Payment instruments in the SEPA area are SEPA credit transfers (SCT): one-time payments, mass payments, payrolls and pensions; SEPA direct debits (SDD): one-off or periodic banking direct debits; and SEPA instant credit transfer (SCT Inst). All previous payment instruments can be used for national payments and for cross-border payments in any of the countries of its geographical area.

The Principality of Andorra will be part of the geographical scope of the Single Euro Payments Area (SEPA) schemes as of 1 March 2019.

The country’s banks are now in the process of developing the technical implementation of the SEPA schemes and are preparing for the individual adherence to the SEPA geographical area of each one of them, which will take place once the Principality has become a SEPA member.

In a first stage, the Andorran banks will be able to send or receive SEPA Credit Transfer (SCT) to and from all existing EPC scheme participants, and the same will follow with SEPA Instant Credit Transfer (SCT Inst) and SEPA Direct Debit (SDD) transactions to and from SCT, SCT Inst and SDD scheme, as and when the Andorran banks adhere to the rest of the schemes.

With the inclusion of Andorra, as well as the Vatican City, the geographical scope of the SEPA schemes will consist of the following 36 countries: the 28 EU Member States plus Iceland, Norway, Liechtenstein, Switzerland, Monaco and San Marino, and now Andorra and the Vatican.

 

For more information see:
European Central Bank www.ecb.europa.eu/paym/../../index.en.html
European Payments Council www.europeanpaymentscouncil.eu/