On 8 April 2022, the European Commission (the Commission) launched an EU Digital Finance Platform that is intended to bring together industry and European public authorities in a joint effort to continue building the Single Market in digital finance. The Platform provides for a Digital Finance Observatory including, among other functionalities, a European Fintech Map – an interactive map showing registered Fintech entities and a description of their businesses. The Platform also provides access to a European Forum for Innovation Facilitators Gateway, which is designed to help connect entrepreneurs with the relevant national authorities. It provides a platform for discussion between the authorities and businesses about, among other issues, the regulatory treatment of innovative products, services and business models.
Speaking at the online launch event, Commissioner Mairead McGuinness, stressed that the Platform is one of the key outcomes of the EU Digital Finance Strategy and is designed to encourage interaction. She also mentioned some of the upcoming Commission initiatives including improvements to the Platform’s existing functionalities and the creation of a Data Hub. The idea behind the Data Hub would be to provide a space where firms can get access to data enabling them to test innovative products and applications.
In her closing remarks, Verena Ross, Chair of the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA), stressed that the Platform will support cross-border activities of national financial facilitators (hubs, sandboxes and accelerators) in their engagements with innovative FinTechs in Europe. In this context she also mentioned some of the activities conducted to date by the European Forum of Innovation Facilitators (EFIF), including dedicated meetings to address various areas of innovation, such as tokenisation, DLT, stablecoins, AI, Big Data, platformisation, green FinTech, open finance, APIs and crypto-assets.