Weekly Events Blog: January 11th | IPT

What Next for Digital Payments

On Tuesday 11 January, the Industry and Parliament Trust (IPT) hosted a virtual event between parliamentarians, industry representatives and academics entitled ‘What Next for Digital Payments?’ The discussion was chaired by Kevin Hollinrake MP, Treasury Select Committee. It welcomed guest speakers Alex Marsh, Head of Klarna UK and Professor Ania Zalewska, Professor of Management, Centre for Governance, Regulation and Industrial Strategy at the University of Bath. The discussion focused on the opportunities and challenges of the future of digital payments

Key discussion points:

  • The shift to e-commerce has been accelerated by the pandemic, allowing the way consumers shop both in store and online to become a fully digital experience. Regulation for consumer protection along with better financial education is needed in this evolving era
  • Around 5m people rely on cash indefinitely. There is a distinct gap between those who can access digital platforms and those who can’t which is leading to digital exclusion as many are alienated by the constant need to own a smartphone and a lack of understanding of online payment processes. Many businesses have chosen to no longer accept cash to reduce banking fees, security risks and impacts on insurance premiums. Cash regulation involves ensuring and maintaining choice so that customers have reasonable and fair choices
  • BNPL services have become increasingly popular as an alternative for owning a credit card, particularly with the younger generation. However, future-proofed regulation is needed to ensure users receive the correct information of both benefits and negatives of accessing BNPL schemes or any other lines of credit. Simple and explicit language in the terms and conditions will make it easier for consumers to access these products and be aware of the risks and consequences of borrowing