Regulation (EC) No 924/2009 on cross-border payments in the Community (the "Cross-border Payments Regulation”) was published in October 2009. It replaced Regulation 2560 and came into effect in all Member States and the three additional EEA (European Economic Area) states (Iceland, Lichtenstein and Norway) on 1 November 2009. 

The Cross-border Payments Regulation lays down rules on cross-border payments within the Community. It specifically limits its application to cross-border payments in euro or the national currency of Member States that opted to extend application to its national currency. So far, this only applies to Swedish kronor and Romanian lei. It does not apply to sterling denominated transactions.

The Regulation applies the principle of the equality of charges. Payment Service Providers (PSPs) must charge the same for cross-border payments processed electronically in euro, Swedish kronor or Romanian lei as for corresponding national payments (where both PSPs are located in the same Member State). The principle applies based upon the denomination (i.e. currency) of the payment, not the denomination of the account from or to which the payment is made. 

So, where a UK customer holding a sterling denominated account orders a credit transfer in euro to a beneficiary in France, then he or she can only be charged by the UK PSP the same charge as for a corresponding domestic UK credit transfer in euro.

Similarly, where a UK cardholder makes a debit card purchase in euro at or from a merchant in France, then he or she can only be charged the same as for a corresponding domestic UK debit card purchase in euro.

Payments UK has created industry implementation guidance to help UK PSPs understand and comply with the Cross-border Payments Regulation. The implementation guidance can be sought be emailing sepa@paymentsuk.org.uk

You can also find more information on the European Commission’s website, here