What is the future of the payments landscape in the UK"

HM Treasury's long-awaited call for evidence on the payments landscape closed today (20 October 2020). This is the first stage in a longer-term review by government of the payments landscape in the UK. UK Finance, as the collective voice for the banking and finance industry, of course has strong views on the review and ongoing actions in the growing, innovative and diverse payments sector.

In recent years, payments has gone from being a little thought of part of financial services to one of the most exciting, diverse and complex industries. Payments not only provides the foundations for the wider economy but continues to innovate and drive changes in technology and society.

The UK is at the forefront of a number of world-leading changes, and we anticipate they will allow for the development of new types of products and services that will become central to how we interact with banks and finance providers in the future. The UK is one of the most sophisticated, safe and innovative payments markets in the world. However, there are some significant challenges that the government will need to address in partnership with the industry in the long term.

We are now seeing changes, such as a big move towards digital payments and banking from Covid-19, that would otherwise have taken years to unfold. Meanwhile, the pandemic has brought into sharp focus the need for robust customer protections. Payment networks that are convenient, easy to use and that offer strong customer protections cost money to provide. The industry wants to ensure that all of this can be provided and enhanced in a sustainable, fair and equitable way that benefits the long-term viability of the payments industry in the UK.

The importance of customer protections, combined with the wider societal changes we are seeing and the seemingly unstoppable move towards digitalisation across our economy, highlights that there are some tricky challenges that lie ahead for the UK. Our view is that the best way of addressing these challenges is through a strong partnership between the industry and government/regulators.

One area that would benefit greatly from a partnership-based approach is digital inclusion and confidence. In this area there are significant challenges in the industry and across government to address the confidence of customers across their normal and their financial lives, in order to ensure that no customer gets left behind. Increasing customer confidence and comfort with using digital payments will be key to the success of a leading payments market. 

Overall, our view is that there is a huge opportunity to set out a bold and coordinated strategy for the UK payments industry to succeed in the next ten years and beyond. We believe that this can be best achieved through our work on ?Payments Futures,? a cross-industry thought leadership initiative convened with the purposes of defining a long-term vision for the UK.



Global Innovation in Payments? at the Digital Innovation Summit
2-20 November - Free for members

Register now for the 2020 Digital Innovation Summit, UK Finance's flagship technology event.

Payments Tech will be a featured theme with sessions, including:

  • Payments Tech Keynote: ISO20022
  • The Future of Payments Infrastructure
  • Interview: Is the Payments Industry Ready for the Cloud?
  • Strong Customer Authentication
  • Open Banking, Innovation and Customer Impact
  • The Big Debate: Global Innovation in Payments

Over three weeks a huge variety of content will be delivered via interactive debates, broadcasts, podcasts, lightning talks, videos, and interviews with senior decision makers. Every day, fresh content will be made available to delegates.

Register now and join the innovators and game changers that are reimagining financial services.

Area of expertise:

Digital Innovation Summit - Payments Tech

The Covid-19 pandemic has had a dramatic and irrevocable effect on how customers in the UK, and abroad, conduct their payments. Join us at the Digital Innovation Summit Payments Tech stream where we will reviews the effects the pandemic has had on the payment's ecosystem, how it has forced innovation, and what the next steps might be for payments, both at home and abroad.

Learn more Read more