Consumers from vulnerable groups such as senior citizens, disabled people and those with low digital skills experience a decline in the accessibility and availability of payment services. This seems to be related to the fact that banks increasingly digitalise their services and close branches.Read more
National Forum on the Payment System
The National Forum on the Payment System (NFPS) is a platform of organisations representing providers and users of payment services that work together to ensure a secure, reliable, accessible and efficient payment system for everyone.
What the NFPS does
The NFPS contributes to ensuring an efficient payment system by:
- discussing current bottlenecks and social consequences of new developments in the payment system
- making agreements in principle about measures to promote efficiency, security, accessibility, availability and standardisation in payments
- collaborating in the collection, analysis and publication of non-competition-sensitive data.
What the NPFS has achieved
The Ministry of Finance established the NFPS in 2002. Since then, it has achieved notable results, such as:
- 2004: agreement on rounding cash payments to the nearest 5 cents, making the 1 and 2 cent coins redundant.
- 2004: execution and publication of a cost study on point of sale payments in 2001, which mapped the social costs of cash and card payments for payment service providers and acceptors. Based on this study, we stepped up our promotion of card payments at points of sale.
- 2007: agreement on the introduction of and compliance with a socially accepted accessibility standard of five kilometres for ATMs in the Netherlands.
- 2013: establishment of the Euro Retail Payments Board by the ECB. This consultative body is fashioned after the NFPS.
- 2015: publication of the Vision on cash, with agreements on the availability and acceptance of cash. These agreements were renewed in spring 2020.
- 2019: introduction of instant payments after a four-year trajectory led by the Dutch Payment Association and DNB, partly at the insistence of the NFPS.
The NFPS brings together the main stakeholders in the Dutch payment system. Its participants represent various groups of payment services users, such as consumers and businesses, and payment services providers, such as banks and payment institutions.
The participants of the National Forum on the Payment System are:
- De Nederlandsche Bank (DNB) (chair and secretariat)
- Algemene Nederlandse Bond voor Ouderen (Dutch Senior Citizens' Association)
- Betaalvereniging Nederland (Dutch Payments Association)
- BOVAG (association of Dutch automobile traders and garages)
VPNI (Association for the Dutch Petroleum Industry)
BETA (Association of Dutch Petrol Stations)
- Consumentenbond (Dutch Consumers’ Association)
- Detailhandel Nederland (Dutch Retail Trade Platform)
- Samenwerkende Brancheorganisaties Filantropie (Association of philantropic sector organisations)
- Ieder(in) (umbrella organisation for people with functional impairments, mental impairments or chronic illnesses)
- KBO-PCOB, KG and NOOM (organisations representing senior citizens)
- Koninklijke Horeca Nederland (Dutch Association of Hospitality Establishments)
- MKB-Nederland (Royal Association MKB-Nederland, representing the interests of Dutch SMEs)
- Nederlandse Vereniging van Banken (Dutch Banking Association)
- Oogvereniging (Eye Association Netherlands)
- Thuiswinkel.org (internet retailers' organisation)
- Verenigde Betaalinstellingen Nederland (Association of Dutch payment institutions)
- Verenigde Groot Incassanten (association representing the interests of wholesale SEPA direct debit billers)
The Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate Policy and the Ministry of Finance act as observers.
Working groups and focus areas
DNB chairs the Forum and also provides the secretariat. The NFPS has three working groups.
- Efficiency and European Affairs: This working group focuses on a cost-effective and smoothly functioning payment system. It also monitors European developments and their impact on the payment system in the Netherlands.
- Accessibility and Availability: This working group aims to ensure that payment products and services are accessible and available to all groups in society, and that everyone can participate independently in the payment system as much as possible.
- Security: This working group looks at the physical safety and digital security of payment products and services. The robustness of the payment system is another focus area of this working group.