11th February 2016

The global payments race

Written by Adrian Buckle, Chief Economist, Payments UK

Britain is in a global race – competition exists across all areas of the economy and technology. You might think that how we pay for things is one area where you won’t find much international variation, with cash and cards being pretty ubiquitous. And yet – while it is certainly true that there are global similarities – scratch the surface and it quickly becomes apparent that UK customers benefit from some of the best payment services in the world in terms of choice, speed and protection.

The point is made in a new Payments UK report, How consumers around the world make payments. The UK has a great track record of leading where others follow, with the progress of contactless payments and mobile payments service, Paym serving as recent highlights.

The UK is even years ahead of countries like the USA, that you might expect to be very similar to us.  For instance the USA is still looking to introduce something like Faster Payments, which has enabled almost instantaneous internet and mobile payments in the UK since 2008. The USA are also still in the early stages of introducing the global chip and PIN technology, which became the norm in the UK back on Valentine’s Day ten years ago.

Through our World Class Payments project, Payments UK has identified 13 core payment capabilities, based on evidence from customers, that are needed for payments in the UK to remain world class. We have also identified what we believe should be the four priorities. This latest report marks another contribution to ensuring that customers benefit from the best possible payment services and the industry we represent remains at the front of the field in the global race for world-class payment services.

How consumers around the world make payments is available from: paymentsuk.org.uk/industry-information/reports

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