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Open Banking

Open Finance

Sitting by the UK, yet in the EU, Ireland experiences both UK and Berlin Group standards, which has benefits but can also cause confusion.

According to Kepios 99% of Irish have access to the internet. Of all Irish citizens using the internet, 75% use the internet for online banking, which is 9% above the EU average. Additionally, Ireland ranks 7th in the integration of digital technologies and 6th for digital public services among EU countries.  

Ireland falls under the PSD2 legislation and has adopted Berlin Group’s NextGenPSD2 standard. PSD2 is a European Directive that regulates electronic payment services and was implemented in all EEA countries in 2016 and went live in September 2019. 

In their European Open Banking league, Yapily ranked Ireland 8th out of 18 countries. Ireland’s Open Banking success is very similar to the UK’s, in the sense of regulation and adoption. As a result of Brexit, many UK businesses have set up satellites or the main base in Ireland. However, given the mix of UK and Berlin group standards that a few banks use, there is some complexity when integrating with a wide variety of banks in Ireland. Open Banking in Ireland continues to gain momentum. Notably, the Bank of Ireland has also issued guidance on Open Banking for consumers, improving education and awareness, which will help boost adoption rates.

Ireland has closely followed the UK with regard to the implementation of Open Banking. However, in Ireland, an entity that is similar to the Open Banking Implementation Entity (OBIE) has not yet been formed and would potentially add great value to the wider ecosystem. An OBIE-like entity could support Irish companies in implementing technical specifications and drive adoption rates forward by increasing the trust in the ecosystem, as Ireland is at a stage in its Open Banking journey that calls for more precise regulatory frameworks and oversight.

The EU Commission has announced its intention to adopt an Open Finance regulatory framework.

The Central Bank of Ireland highlights the need to make sure instant payment solutions and systems at the national level can interact seamlessly with European counterparts to ensure interoperability.

According to The Global Findex Database, 100% of Irish adults had bank accounts in 2021.

In a recent study researching the Open Banking adoption among consumers, Irish consumers scored higher than average Europeans in all areas measured. 40% of Irish consumers were interested in receiving intelligent assistance to manage payments, 37% were interested in having their data used to develop convenient new payment methods, 33% having their data used in aggregating financial information and storing it in one place, and 33% in having their data used to offer a better range or better quality of services.

According to Yapily, an independent implementation body, such as OBIE (The Open Banking Implementation Entity) in the UK, could potentially add great value to the wider ecosystem. An OBIE-like entity could support Irish companies in implementing technical specifications and drive adoption rates forward by increasing the trust in the ecosystem.

TechIreland’s database featured 249 indigenous Fintech businesses and, in addition, over forty Fintech multinationals, including some of the largest names in the sector in 2021. While Dublin is the main hub, a third are located outside Dublin, with operations spread throughout Ireland.

Ireland ranks third in human capital among EU countries in the Digital Economy and Society Index (DESI) 2022. The human capital measures digital skills, the proportion of employed people working as ICT specialists, female ICT specialists, and enterprises offering ICT training.

The Innovation Hub allows Fintech firms to engage with the Central Bank of Ireland outside of existing formal regulator/firm engagement processes. It is open to anyone developing or implementing innovations in financial services based on new technologies.

Ireland has adopted the Berlin Group’s NextGenPSD2 technical standard.