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Economy and Finance
News article13 June 2018BrusselsDirectorate-General for Economic and Financial Affairs

Security Union: Commission publishes report on restriction on payments in cash

Commission examines impacts of potential cash payment restrictions.

The European Commission has today published a report on the impacts of restrictions on payments in cash. The report concludes that at this stage, the Commission is not considering any legislative initiative on this matter. Restrictions on cash payments are a sensitive issue for European citizens, many of whom view the possibility to pay in cash as a fundamental freedom, which should not be disproportionally restricted.

The report builds on the findings of a study commissioned by the European Commission. The study, finalised early 2018, suggested that restrictions on payments in cash would not significantly prevent terrorism financing, but indicated that such restrictions could be useful in combatting money laundering. The study also noted that the existence of diverging restrictions at national level had a noticeable negative impact on the internal market by distorting competition and creating an uneven playing field among some businesses. As the focus of the current initiative was countering terrorism financing, further targeted assessment of potential restrictions would be required.

Today's report is the latest step in the process launched by the Commission in January 2017 to examine the impacts of restrictions on payments in cash, in the context of the fight against terrorism. The Economic and Financial Affairs Council of 12 February 2016 called on the Commission to undertake this exercise and "explore the need for appropriate restrictions on cash payments exceeding certain thresholds".

For more information

Report from the Commission to the European Parliament and the Council on restrictions on payments in cash – COM(2018) 483 final
English
(191.73 KB - PDF)
Download
ECORYS - Study on an EU initiative for a restriction on payments in cash - Final Report
English
(4.59 MB - PDF)
Download

EU initiative on restrictions on payments in cash

 

Details

Publication date
13 June 2018
Author
Directorate-General for Economic and Financial Affairs
Location
Brussels