Generally speaking, a payment has the purpose of extinguishing a claim or a debt after a commercial or financial transaction was made. It requires the use of a payment instrument, be it fiduciary money (coins and banknotes) or other payment instruments like bank transfers, cheques, debit or credit cards, or electronic money.
Bearing in mind the large volumes and the considerable amounts they handle, payments systems ought to be reliable and efficient so that they neither compromise economic transactions nor the sound functioning of our modern market economy.
The BCL is responsible for the oversight of payment and securities settlement systems as well as payment instruments. This oversight is important, as it assures efficiency, which aims to ensure the proper functioning of the market infrastructure, as well as stability, which includes the prevention against systemic risk and also ensures the security of systems and the confidence of users.