Europe paves the way for payments that work for everyone

It’s not the first time we’ve celebrated good political decisions coming out of the European Union. After European policymakers put more transparency for international payments into law, they are now keen to tackle other flaws in the payment system.

Last week, the European Commission set out their ambitions for retail payments in Europe: making payments cheaper, faster, convenient and more transparent for consumers - a mission that the Wise team have been working towards since 2011.

Instant is the new normal

Today, 25% of transfers via Wise arrive in under 20 seconds, but unfortunately, that’s far from being the norm. Encouraging more banks to adopt instant payments will make this a reality for more people.

However, that would only solve one part of the problem. The other issue is systemic. There is plenty of competition in the financial sector from newer players, like Wise, for consumers to see. But behind the scenes, the banks still hold a monopoly on access to the payment infrastructure in Europe.

The European Commission has now put a question mark next to that monopoly. Consumers can benefit from instant payments quicker and more universally when non-banks like Wise can directly participate in payment systems. Read all about it here.

Transparent, and eventually free

Transparency has been one of the key pillars of our mission here at Wise, a goal we share with the World Bank, who cite a lack of transparency as the main reason the cost of remittances remain high. Today, the average cost of remittances is 6.82%. The Wise average is 0.7%. Lowering that cost to under 3% of the amount sent overseas globally is considered so crucial, it’s part of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

The European Commission has now committed to playing its part in achieving that goal and we can only encourage them to hold banks to account when they are overcharging and under-communicating.

You can too. If you want to hold your bank to account and get involved in campaigning for more transparency globally, sign up here:

Favicon for Help us change the law — join Nothing To Hide

Want to hear more about our policy positions? Find out more.

About Wise

Wise is a global technology company, building the best way to move money around the world. With the Wise account people and businesses can hold over 50 currencies, move money between countries and spend money abroad. Large companies and banks use Wise technology too; an entirely new cross-border payments network that will one day power money without borders for everyone, everywhere. However you use the platform, Wise is on a mission to make your life easier and save you money.

Co-founded by Kristo Käärmann and Taavet Hinrikus, Wise launched in 2011 under its original name TransferWise. It is one of the world’s fastest growing, profitable technology companies and is listed on the London Stock Exchange under the ticker, WISE.

16 million people and businesses use Wise, which processes over €10 billion in cross-border transactions every month, saving customers over €1.6 billion a year.

Contact details

  • Download vCard

Related topics

Receive Wise news on your RSS reader.

Or subscribe through Atom URL manually