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Guernsey, Jersey, Isle Of Man Join SEPA

by Jason Gorringe, Lowtax.net, London
15 February, 2016

The European Payments Council has confirmed that from May 1, 2016, Guernsey, Jersey, and the Isle of Man will become part of the geographical scope of the direct debit and credit transfer schemes of the Single Euro Payments Area.

This development will enable banks in the three islands to apply to join the SEPA schemes, which facilitate fast and secure cross-border transfers in euros.

SEPA is an initiative of the European banking industry that is intended to make all electronic payments in euros across the EU, including by credit card, debit card, bank transfer or direct debit, as easy as for domestic payments.

Guernsey's Minister for Commerce and Employment, Kevin Stewart, welcomed the announcement, stating: "Today's announcement of our inclusion in the geographic scope of SEPA is excellent news. It gives those of our banks that wish to do so the opportunity to join the SEPA direct debit and credit transfer schemes, and thus to offer their customers the benefits that these secure and efficient schemes provide for payments in euros. Not all banks will necessarily wish to do so, but this provides them with the choice. As many of our largest banks have operations in more than one of the three islands, it is important that all three are joining SEPA together. Today's announcement reflects a lot of hard and well-coordinated work over several years by industry, government, and regulators in the three jurisdictions, working closely with our respective Brussels offices."

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