Open Banking 

Open Banking enables authorised third-party providers to access payment accounts with customer consent to provide account information and payment products and services. The open banking market is developing new ways to pay, improving access to credit and simplifying processes through automated sharing of account data. We work with our members and the broader stakeholder community to contribute to the success of open banking. Our focus is now on how to enable open banking payments to offer customers more choice about how they pay and on considering how open banking can extend to open finance in a way that provides customer benefit. We look forward to the completion of the Final Open Banking Roadmap in 2022 and the development of a new governance model for open banking.

Open Finance 

The FCA set out their expectation that industry would develop roadmaps in their feedback statement (March 2021). UK Finance has now been working with members to demonstrate the various industry-led use cases which are emerging, centred around outcomes for the consumer. 

Privacy, Data Ethics & AI 

As the digital transformation progresses, financial sector firms need to be able to innovate for the benefit of customers and to drive efficiency. But this must be achieved while ensuring that customer information is treated with respect for individuals’ privacy and other rights. To help find this balance, we engage closely with developments in data protection law, including regulatory guidance and more fundamental changes to the UK’s data protection legal regime post-Brexit. We also work closely with member specialists to develop thought leadership on the challenges associated with the roll out of AI and engage with regulatory authorities to promote a proportionate carefully considered approach to AI regulation. Lastly, we provide horizontal support to wider UK Finance policy work, where there are important privacy or data ethics considerations, such as proposals for new data sharing. 

New Digital Assets and Money

UK Finance’s New Digital Assets and Money workstream is led out of the Payments and Innovation unit, however, it is a cross-cutting workstream and is supported by colleagues from across the business, each bringing their own lens of expertise, for example, payments, economic crime, consumer protections, securities, international, legal and digital technology. Our work covers developments across the new digital assets and money space, but is focused on issues connected with central bank digital currencies (CBDCs), stablecoins and wider unbacked cryptoassets. UK Finance works alongside members and associate members to respond to regulatory initiatives and policy proposals, produces reports and thought leadership and utilises our convening power to bring together different parts of the industry, both traditional finance firms and new crypto firms.

To support the work, we look for input and oversight to our Product and Service Boards (PSB), including the Payments PSB, Economic Crime PSB and the Capital and Wholesale Markets PSB. We also have a governance structure to support the breadth of activity, including a New Digital Assets and Money Steering Group, made of senior level representatives from a broad range of our membership.

We also work with stakeholders outside of UK Finance, both domestically and internationally. This includes coordinating, where relevant to do so, with other trade associations active on these issues. We’ve been working alongside the City of London Corporation, the Digital Pound Foundation, TheCityUK, the payments association, innovate finance, and CryptoUK to publish the ‘Digital Currency Glossary’.

Digital currencies have been gaining rapid momentum over the past few years and have the potential to change how society thinks about and uses money. There is no doubt that this is an area of growing interest for many consumers, merchants and financial institutions. The adoption of new forms of regulated digital money across the globe will open many opportunities for the UK to remain competitive in leading the digitisation of the UK’s financial services sector. Understanding the language of this new industry and technology will be vital for policy makers and help them to recognise and evaluate the enormous potential of this sector. Click here to read the glossary in full.