The Payments Council’s vision of closer private and public sector collaboration to influence the future of payments has been endorsed by the Government, following a joint conference looking at the evolution of Government payments.
David Gauke MP, Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury, and Lord Freud, Minister for Welfare Reform, joined Payments Council CEO Adrian Kamellard to discuss their common desire to see the UK’s payment systems evolve in line with the public interest. The Government is the single largest volume user of the UK’s payments systems and made more than one billion tax credit, state pension and state benefit payments to individuals through the UK’s payment schemes in 2011.
HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) has already been working closely with the payments industry to support the efficient and successful roll-out of the Real Time Information (RTI) program. RTI will improve the operation of PAYE and is the biggest overhaul to the tax system since the Second World War.
Discussions have also been taking place with the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) over their introduction of Universal Credit. The efficient collection and matching of RTI data is a critical element of the improvements to the benefits system that are being made through the Universal Credit programme, which the Government is planning to roll-out from October 2013.
A key role for the Payments Council is to ensure that the national payments infrastructure is developed to meet UK customer needs, and to these ends it will work closely with Government through a new collaborative Government Co-ordination Committee (GCC). The aim of this senior forum will be to establish shared objectives and priorities and will provide a platform for closer inter-sector collaboration. These will then be mapped onto the Payments Council’s Roadmap, which will be the key strategic document for any change in the UK payments industry.
The Payments Roadmap will look ahead to develop a two, five and 10-year work plan for payments in the UK. It will define areas where collaboration will foster innovation and where competition works best, influencing investment decisions in the payment infrastructure over the long-term.