The Bank of Finland ensures the availability and issuance of cash in Finland. In addition to domestic cash supply, the Bank is also responsible for certain tasks relating to the development and security of payment systems.

In 2018, topical issues were the digital payment methods that have emerged alongside cash and payment cards. The new payment methods and channels necessitate financial literacy among the general public and an understanding of the related security risks.

In its statements, the Bank of Finland emphasised the importance of payment system security and oversight. The Bank was also engaged in various ways in preventive work against disruptions in payment systems and cyber risks. In addition, the Bank participated in many domestic and euro area development projects in the field of payment systems. The Bank also coordinates the Payments Council, which brings together users and providers of payment services.

In 2018, the Bank developed its collateral management system and the TARGET2 payment system maintained by the Eurosystem, through which banks settle payments between each other via accounts held in their respective central banks.

Availability of cash services must be ensured also in the future

Even though the amount of cash in circulation increased further in 2018, the supply of cash services has weakened steadily since the turn of the millennium. In November, the Bank of Finland published its guiding principles for the maintenance of cash services.

According to the Bank’s guiding principles, bank customers must, for example, be entitled to make a reasonable number of cash withdrawals at no charge. The Bank of Finland’s view is that cash must continue to be accepted as a means of payment for services of critical importance to the public.

The Bank of Finland organised a conference entitled Money in the Digital Age, which examined various innovations and monetary policy measures to further develop digital payments. The keynote speakers at the conference were Nobel Laureate Professor Bengt Holmström and Hyun Shin, Head of Research at the Bank for International Settlements. The Bank of Finland also organised, among other things, a Nordic conference on cyber security.

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