The Berlin Group
The ‘Berlin Group’ is a pan-European payments interoperability standards and harmonisation initiative with the primary objective of defining open and common scheme- and processor-independent standards in the interbanking domain between Creditor Bank (Acquirer) and Debtor Bank (Issuer), complementing the work carried out by e.g. the European Payments Council. As such, the Berlin Group has been established as a pure technical standardisation body, focusing on detailed technical and organisational requirements to achieve this primary objective.
The Berlin Group first met in Berlin, hence its name, in October 2004 and currently has participation of 26 major players in the payments industry from 10 different euro-zone countries and from the UK, Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Iceland, Turkey, Bulgaria, Hungary, Russia, Serbia and Switzerland, together representing more than 25 billion card-originated transactions annually within the Single Euro Payments Area (SEPA). The participants are banks (ASPSPs), banking associations, payment associations, national and international payment schemes, and interbank processors working in SEPA.