In September 2019, PSD2 went live in the EEA. The Greek fintech industry has seen significant growth trends in recent years and Greek banks already offer open banking.
Open banking is banking practice that securely shares financial information such as consumer banking, transactions and other financial data to third-party financial service providers (Estevez, 2020). Sharing data is done through the use of application programming interfaces (APIs) and only with the consent of customers (The Balance, 2020). Open banking is the drive behind both innovation and competition in the financial industry (Cahill, n.d.).
PSD2 is a European Directive that regulates electronic payment services, was implemented in all EEA countries in 2016 and went live in September 2019.
The Greek fintech industry has seen significant growth trends in recent years and there are 44 FinTech startups in the country’s capital, Athens (Tracxn, 2021). Following the financial crisis, Greek entrepreneurs have been growing the startup ecosystem which has been attracting entrepreneurs from all over Europe due to low cost of living, low crime rate, good location in Europe and previous investments from companies such as Tesla (Tucker, 2020). Additionally, Greece was named the 2018 European Capital of Innovation by the EU, highlighting the wealth of raw talent (Tucker, 2020). Greece has 14 Digital Innovation Hubs covering market sectors from agriculture to cyber security and blockchain (DESI, 2020, 12).
The Greek government has put digitisation as a top priority with the implementation of Greece’s Growth Strategy (DESI, 2020, 12). In 2019, Greece made progress in terms of the digital services provided to start a business by developing services on the One-Stop-Shop platform (DESI, 2020, 12). Furthermore, Greece has signed the Quantum Declaration of cooperation to develop and deploy a European Quantum Communications Infrastructure as well as the declaration on cooperation on Artificial Intelligence (DESI, 2020, 12). Greece has acknowledged the need for a strategy for the digital transformation of the Greek industry in order to transform the economy and reap the full benefits of digital technologies (DESI, 2020, 13).
Of all Greek citizens using the internet, 40% use the internet for online banking, which is 26% below the EU average (DESI, 2020, 11). Additionally, on integration of digital technologies, Greece ranks 24th among EU countries (DESI, 2020, 12). Furthermore, Greece ranks 27th in the EU for digital public services (DESI, 2020, 0).
Greece has a total of 36 banks, the largest of which include Alpha Bank and Attica Bank.
Open banking uses an API that allows financial institutions to exchange financial data, usually through a third party-developed application (Estevez, 2020). These applications are developed by up and coming FinTech companies with the mission to improve digital banking.
To access and use the open banking APIs in Greece, you will need to acquire an account information service provider license, issued by the relevant authority. Furthermore, you will require a relevant certificate (QTSPs or eIDAS), compliant with PSD2 requirements. Alternatively, you can use an open banking platform, such as Nordigen.
The Balance. (2020, October 11). What Open Banking Is and How It Will Affect You. https://www.thebalance.com/what-is-open-banking-and-how-will-it-affect-you-4173727
Cahill, H. (n.d.).InvoiceFair. The Evolution of Open Banking: Connectivity breeds digital competition. https://invoicefair.com/the-evolution-of-open-banking-connectivity-breeds-digital-competition-081118/
DESI. (2020). Greece.Digital Economy and Society Index (DESI) 2020, 1-15.
Estevez, E. (2020, August 27).Open Banking. Investopedia. https://www.investopedia.com/terms/o/open-banking.asp
Tracxn. (2021, June 5).FinTech Startups in Athens. Tracxn. https://tracxn.com/explore/FinTech-Startups-in-Athens
Tucker, C. (2020, February 25).10 promising Greece-based startups to watch in 2020 and beyond. EU-Startups. https://www.eu-startups.com/2020/02/10-promising-greece-based-startups-to-watch-in-2020/
Nordigen is an authorised Account Information Service Provider. We provide free access to bank data and premium data insights, using regulated PSD2 connections.