Vatican City will join the Single Euro Payments Area (SEPA), announced a Holy See press release on November 30, 2018.
Last week, the Administration Council of the European Payments Council approved the extension of the geographic area to the small State. It is foreseen that the SEPA system will be opened to Vatican financial institutions on March 1, 2019.
This inclusion is “a very positive sign,” said Rene Bruelhart, President of the Financial Information Authority. “It will help to facilitate payments and to harmonize services. Moreover, it demonstrates the Holy See’s effort to improve financial transparency.”
SEPA harmonizes electronic payments in Europe, specifies the note, enabling consumers, businesses and public administrations to effect and receive transfers and automatic withdrawals on the same basic conditions, and rendering all cross-border payments in euros as easy as domestic transfers.
With this extension to the Holy See, on March 1, 2019, the SEPA area will include 36 States: the 28 Members of the European Union, as well as Iceland, Norway, Liechtenstein, Switzerland, Monaco, Saint-Marin, the Principality of Andorra and the Vatican.