The Central Bank of Ireland ('Central Bank') will be the competent authority in Ireland for the authorisation and supervision of payment institutions. Effective from 1 November 2009, payment institutions will be regulated institutions.
Each potential applicant must consider whether its proposed business model:
- requires authorisation pursuant to the European Communities (Payment Services) Regulations 2009 ('Regulations');
- complies with the Central Bank’s requirements; and
- is capable of complying with, and adhering to, the requirements that must be satisfied on an ongoing basis.
Having satisfactorily completed this consideration, the applicant must contact the Central Bank (Consumer Protection: Banking and Policy Division).
Prior to submitting an application for authorisation, applicants are advised to provide introductory information - an introduction and overview of the firm in addition to a transaction flow diagram outlining the applicant's proposed payment services. Subsequent to the provision of this information, the Central Bank will arrange a preliminary meeting to discuss an applicant's proposal. Details of the information required at the introductory and preliminary meeting stages are outlined in the following document, Pre-Application Submission Requirements.
The introductory and preliminary information serve a dual purpose, enabling the Central Bank to familiarise itself with the background and key elements of the applicant's proposals whilst identifying, at a critical stage, any potential issues with the proposed business.
Please refer to the Guidance Note, entitled 'Guidance Note on Completing an Application for Authorisation as a Payment Institution under Regulation 18 of the European Communities (Payment Services) Regulations 2009 (the 'Regulations')', for guidance in relation to the requirements of the Central Bank for establishing a payment institution in Ireland (including its agents and branches).
Applicants seeking authorisation under the Regulations should submit the following material:
The following document sets out the prudential supervision requirements for payment institutions authorised by the Central Bank and should be reviewed in advance of completing the application form: Prudential Requirements for Payment Institutions. Each applicant should bear in mind the nature of its proposed business and structure in preparing an application for submission. The Central Bank will advise the applicant of any additional information or clarification required, having reviewed the documentation submitted, by issuing detailed written comments to the applicant or its legal representative, as appropriate.
An effective and expeditious authorisation process depends on the timeliness and quality of responses received to the Central Bank’s comments.
Please note that the discretion provided to the Central Bank to waive all or part of the procedure and conditions set out in Chapters 2 and 3 and register firms as small payment institutions has not been availed of. Thus firms wishing to provide payment services are required to apply for authorisation as a payment institution.