The European Commission (Commission) has published a consultation paper, Fintech: a more competitive and innovative European financial sector.

The consultation paper seeks input from stakeholders to further develop the Commission’s policy approach towards technological innovation in financial services. It seeks input in terms of stakeholders’ perspectives on new technologies’ impact on the European financial services sector, both from the perspective of providers of financial services and consumers.

The consultation paper is structured along four broad policy objectives that reflect the main opportunities related to FinTech:

  1. fostering access to financial services for consumers and businesses;
  2. bringing down operational costs and increasing efficiency for the industry;
  3. making the single market more competitive by lowering barriers to entry; and
  4. balancing greater data sharing and transparency with data security and protection needs.

Section 1 of the consultation paper explores the benefits that FinTech can offer to consumers, investors and firms in terms of access to financial services and strengthening financial inclusion. It also seeks feedback on the potential challenges and risks posed by financial innovations to consumer protection and stability of the EU financial sector.

Section 2 reviews how FinTech can improve services, reduce operational costs, increase efficiency and speed up innovation in the EU financial services industry by streamlining processes in the provision of services. It also looks at the challenges that these developments bring for financial stability and financial sector employment.

Section 3 describes the opportunities of FinTech in increasing the competitiveness of the single market, through lowering barriers to entry for newcomers, while preserving fair competition, a level playing field and incentives to innovate. This section also explores how regulators, supervisors and industry can best support innovation in the financial sector.

Section 4 assesses the impact of FinTech on the capacity to estimate and monitor risk in the financial sector via access to larger amounts of data than traditional channels have offered, while protecting individuals’ need for privacy and control over their personal data.

The deadline for comments on the consultation paper is 15 June 2017.

Based on the responses to the consultation paper and the work of its FinTech Task Force, the Commission will present an EU strategy for FinTech which will determine the action that will support a technology-driven single market for financial services.

View European Commission consults on developing its policy approach to FinTech, 23 March 2017