Created on 15.09.2014

The Latvijas Banka Council made amendments to its regulation of 9 September 2010 "The Regulation for the Participation Procedure in the Bank of Latvia's Electronic Clearing System", to its appendix "System Rules for Participation in the EKS".

Amendments have been made, taking into account the planned changes in the system and its development.

Starting with November 2014, it is expected to ensure operation of the EKS system in Latvia on the transferred working days (the first working day has been transferred from Monday, 17 November to Saturday, 22 November), which are holidays of the euro payment system TARGET2. It will give a chance for credit institutions that are participants in the EKS system, to speed up the execution of customer payments and promote efficient operation of the enterprises on the transferred working days.

Amendments regarding the operation of the EKS system during the transferred working days will take effect on 6 October 2014.

In another new development, on 9 December 2014 it is expected to establish an EKS system connection with the system STEP2 maintained by the euro banking association EBA Clearing, with Latvijas Banka becoming a direct participant in the STEP2 system and thus halting the connection between the EKS system and the RPS SEPA Clearer system maintained by Deutsche Bundesbank, which up until then ensured the indirect access of EKS system participants to the STEP2 system.

The STEP2 system maintained by EBA Clearing is the only customer credit transfer settlement system, which ensures reachability of all credit institutions of the European Union within SEPA area. The direct connection between the EKS system and the STEP2 will shorten the time for payment exchange between the EKS system and STEP2 system, thus providing an opportunity to EKS system participants to extend, by more than an hour, the acceptance time of customer payments and improve the servicing of customer payments in the credit institutions which participate in the EKS system.

According to the amendments adopted by the Saeima to the Law on the Prevention of legalization of financing obtained through criminal activity and terrorism, the Council of Latvijas Banka adopted a new regulation for the "Requirements for the Prevention of Financing Obtained through Criminal Activity and Financing of Terrorism by Means of Purchasing and Selling Foreign Cash Currency", which will take effect on 16 September 2014 and will be binding to capital companies engaged in providing services for purchasing and selling foreign cash currencies.

The new regulation is based on the existing Latvijas Banka regulation in this area, supplementing it with several crucial changes that apply also to reinforcing the requirements for client identification and control over client transactions. The capital companies will have to review the documents of their internal control system and ensure their compliance to the requirements of the regulation by 1 January 2015.