Efficient and secure payment systems are the foundation of a stable financial system. The Bundesbank secures and monitors cashless payments in Germany as a financial centre, provides settlement and clearing services and plays an active role in the further development of the single European payment system.
Whilst Europe is home to successful payment systems – Germany’s girocard scheme, for instance – these are often only national in scope. How can payment operations be harmonised across Europe and made more convenient for consumers?
Digital transformation is giving rise to new business models and is fundamentally changing existing business processes. Many of these processes will be much more automated still in future. Distributed ledger technology, which uses tokens to represent real goods and services and allows these to be traded digitally, makes it possible for flows of services to be programmable, autonomous and automated.
Weidmann: central banks should not crowd out private payment solutions
According to Bundesbank President Jens Weidmann, central banks should beware of crowding out private payment solutions and should play a supportive role instead. Mr Weidmann pointed out that competition and regulation are essential for a good market outcome. As central banks provide the backbone of the payment system, they need to be at the cutting edge of technology, he explained. This, he emphasised to participants of a Bundesbank virtual conference, includes working on central bank digital currency.