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Ireland’s Payments Industry Fares Well in Benchmarking Exercise

4th February 2019

Banking & Payments Federation Ireland (BPFI) notes with interest that Ireland’s Payments Industry is seen to fare well in a benchmarking exercise undertaken by Indecon Consultants for the Dept of Finance and published today.

According to the Indecon report, a rapid increase in the take-up of electronic payments now places Ireland 10th of 27 European countries, and ahead of the EU average, for the combined use of card payments, credit transfers and direct debits.  The report notes that this rapid growth in electronic payments has benefits for the Irish economy in terms of improvements in efficiency and in convenience.

Speaking about the trends highlighted in the Indecon study, Richard Walsh, Head of Digital and Payments Strategy with  BPFI states:

“Payment card usage has exploded in recent years thanks mainly to the rollout of contactless payment cards and smartphone-based mobile wallets. BPFI’s  most recent Payments Monitor shows that in the first half of 2018 alone contactless payments grew by about 66% year-on-year in both volume and value to 158 million payments valued at €1.9 billion. European Central Bank data shows that the rate of adoption of card payments by Irish consumers is the highest in the EU and takes Ireland into the second tier of card payment nations in the EU, alongside Estonia, France and the Netherlands.”

“At the same time, digital banking transaction volumes, including online and mobile banking, grew by 18.4% year-on-year to  46.8 million in the first half of 2018 – putting internet banking usage in Ireland on a par with the likes of France, Switzerland and the UK but behind Scandinavian countries.”

The Indecon report usefully references potential opportunities for collaboration between banks in the further development of instant payment solutions. In this regards Richard Walsh goes on to state:

“We can point to a number of  developments on this front.  The main banks recently provided BPFI with a  mandate to examine the development of an , industry-wide consumer and merchant mobile-based payment proposition for the Irish market.  Banks have also agreed a timeline for the introduction of SEPA Instant – which will deliver real-time payments for the Single Euro Payments Area.  Coupled with  clear appetite on the part of consumers for  mobile-based, instant payment solutions, this provides the basis for an innovative payments infrastructure that should serve the country well into the future.”

The BPFI Payments Monitor H1 2018 is available on the BPFI website here.


Notes: Banking & Payments Federation Ireland (BPFI) represents the banking, payments and fintech sector in Ireland.  Together with its affiliates, the Federation of International Banks in Ireland and the Fintech & Payments Association of Ireland, BPFI has over 70 member institutions and associates, including licensed domestic and foreign banks and institutions operating in the financial marketplace here.

Contact: Jillian Heffernan, Head of Communications, 087 9016880 or

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