Bank of Albania / The law “On Payment Services” is approved

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On April 30, the Assembly of the Republic of Albania approved the law drafted by the Bank of Albania and proposed by the Ministry of Finance and Economy "On Payment Services". The adoption of this law is considered as a multidimensional achievement and fulfillment of a series of commitments of the Bank of Albania. More specifically, the adoption of the law marks a significant progress in the process of integration of the country into the European Union by approximating the second Directive "On payment services in the internal market"  as well as for integration with the common market of euro payments (Single Euro Payment Area), creating the foundations of the interconnections between the Albanian and the European payment market. Also, this law meets a number of objectives in the action plan of the National Strategy for the Market of Small Value Payments as well as the engagements of the Bank of Albania in the National Strategy for the Diaspora.

Beyond the above objectives, it is worth noting that this law will significantly help in the modernization and efficient development of the domestic payment market. The purpose of the law is to create the legal framework for the functioning of payment services in the Republic of Albania. In more detail, the law creates conditions and rules for: a) the establishment, licensing, organization, operation and supervision of payment institutions; b) transparency of terms and requirements for information on payment services; and c) the rights and obligations of users and payment service providers in relation to the provision of these services.

The new rules enacted by the law aim at promoting and expanding the financial inclusion of the population, reducing the costs of these services and consequently encouraging the use of electronic payment instruments. These objectives are intended to be achieved through a legal framework aimed at: (i) impartiality and proportionality in the licensing and regulation of payment service providers; (ii) promoting innovative business models that facilitate access to third parties (for example, agent services) and external resources; (iii) strengthening the BoA's supervisory legal basis for payment services; (iv) and last but not least, the establishment of a framework for consumer protection, including monitoring and enforcement mechanisms, as well as the effective resolution of disputes.

In conclusion, the Bank of Albania conveys its thanks to the World Bank, the Central Bank of Italy and all institutions involved in the drafting, consultation and approval of this law, which supported the Bank of Albania in this project.

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