Romanian central bank launches FinTech Innovation Hub project

Romanian central bank launches FinTech Innovation Hub project
By Iulian Ernst in Bucharest September 24, 2019

Romania’s central bank, the National Bank of Romania (BNR), has announced the launch of the FinTech Innovation Hub project, defined as “a platform for dialogue with companies developing innovative public interest solutions in the area of payment and financial services”.

The move comes as the implementation of the Payment Services Directive (PSD2) compels banks to open up their customer data to third party firms (when customers give consent). PSD2 gives non-banking firms the chance to compete with banks in the payments business and give consumers more choice over financial products and services.

Banks will be required to build application programming interfaces (APIs) that give third parties secure access to their back-end data.

In this context, the BNR has invited fintech companies to register and ask for guidance. It is not clear whether the companies subject to the central bank’s initiative have been consulted.

“Companies that are directly involved in the development of innovative payment services solutions can start a dialogue with the BNR experts with a view to presenting their FinTech innovation projects or to receiving guidance on the compliance of such services and products,” BNR’s press release reads.

The companies are invited to fill in “standardised forms” in order to ask for guidance. The central bank admits monitoring fintech projects with a view of identifying regulatory and supervisory measures to be taken is part of the FinTech Innovation Hub project.

“The National Bank of Romania intends to identify the regulatory and/or supervisory measures necessary to mitigate any risk associated with innovative products and/or services in the field of payment services, without hindering the development of such innovative solutions/products,” it said.