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Belgium: 1 in 7 transfers happens via instant payments

Two years since its launch, Belgian instant payments are making real inroads in the country. Today, 20 banks process instant transfers, accounting for 95% of all current accounts in the country.

In 2019, Belgium executed 59.8 million instant credit transfers. In 2020 there were just under 100 million (99.6). And in 2021 the banks have already processed 18.25 million.

This means on an annual basis, no less than 14.5% of all transfers are made via instant payments, which means that 1 in 7 transfers are instant.

In total 177.6 million instant transfers were made in the past 24 months. An impressive number when you consider that instant payments did not exist two years ago in Belgium. The figure shows that instant credit transfers can become the new normal.

The advantage of instant transfers, according to Febelfin, is countless: the money goes directly from the payer’s account, but is also immediately transferred to the recipient’s account. And that is good news for both consumers and traders.

Figures at a glance

Since the start, 177.6 million instant credit transfers have been executed in Belgium. A record day was December 1, 2020 with no fewer than 512,655 instant payments. Today 1 transfer to 7 takes place instantaneously. The average amount of instant transfer was €574 in 2020.


Source: Digital and Card Payments Yearbooks

The figures show a further increase compared to 2019 despite the pandemic when Belgians made 59.8 million instant credit transfers. The average amount per individual transfer was then €482.

95% of the payment accounts in Belgium can receive an instant transfer and many banks already offered the service. In 2020, AXA Bank Belgium and bpost also included the service in their offer.

Next up: instant credit transfers across borders

After some forerunners in the eurozone, Belgium was one of the first European countries to offer instant payments. This year, Belfin’s ambition goes a little further and is committed to instant transfers across national borders. Experts then speak of cross-border instant payments.

Belfius, BNP Paribas Fortis, ING and KBC already offer these international instant credit transfers. The goal is to expand this offer significantly by the end of 2021.

In concrete terms, this means that by the end of this year, all banks in Europe that offer instant credit transfers will at least be able to receive these cross-border instant payments.

To read more about EU country Instant Payments CLICK HERE

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