National Bank Applies for SEPA Membership

The National Bank of Georgia (NBG) reported on September 20 that it submitted an official application for Georgia’s membership of the Single Euro Payment Area (SEPA).

The central bank noted that joining SEPA is “an important step” on the path of Georgia’s European integration and that Georgia is the first country in the region to apply for SEPA membership.

SEPA was gradually phased in between 2008 and 2014, first in the euro area, and – from 2016 – beyond. It facilitates cashless euro payments via credit transfer and direct debit, and eliminates differences between national and cross-border payments by harmonizing standards in all the participating countries. 

The Central Bank also said that by joining SEPA, the credibility of Georgia’s financial sector in the international arena will increase considerably, and that it would counts on improvement of trade with the European Economic Area.

The European Payments Council meets four times a year, while the application for membership is being reviewed in consultation with the European Commission. According to the NBG, the estimated period of holding the next session is November 2022.

The Parliament approved the legislative package on Georgia’s membership to SEPA with its third hearing on September 9. The legislative package envisages amendments to 21 laws.

This post is also available in: ქართული (Georgian) Русский (Russian)


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