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Lithuania's central bank launches interbank instant payments

12 Sep 2018, 23:44 ( 12 Sep, 2018)

DF-Xinhua Report
Photo Source: Lithuania's central bank.

Lithuania's central bank has launched interbank instant payments.

According to an announcement by the Bank of Lithuania on Wednesday, instant payments in the bank's payment system Centrolink, a payment infrastructure, were launched with pilot payments from Lithuania to Spain and Estonia.

Instant payment is a method allowing money transaction within a few seconds with a few clicks on mobile phone or other devices.

"A participant in our system sent money using the new method and, in 3 seconds, it appeared in the payees' accounts with commercial banks in Estonia and Spain," Marius Jurgilas, Member of the Board of the Bank of Lithuania, was quoted as saying in the announcement.

With the launch of instant payments in the Bank of Lithuania's infrastructure, instant payments are now available within Lithuania as well as to 16 other European countries.

The Bank of Lithuania expects instant payments would reduce the use of cash in the country and increase competition among payment institutions thus lowering costs for consumers.

Instant payments have been launched in Lithuania amid concerns of growing concentration in the country's banking sector, which causes threats to competition. Three banks controlled by Nordic banking groups dominate Lithuanian banking and financial service market, with 82 percent of total assets in Lithuania's banking sector, according to the latest data from the Bank of Lithuania.