Payment operations are an integral part of the economic system of a country and their basic function is to enable a safe and effective use of cash as a means of payment and to execute cashless payment transactions, i.e., to transfer funds from the payer to the payee. A successful and safe functioning of payment operations is also of exceptional importance for the central bank, the institution responsible for the functioning of the national payment system, as well as for the overall financial system and all of its participants. Payment operations comprise a set of instruments, procedures, rules and technical support for sending information and settling transactions between participants. In a narrower sense, payment operations include formal arrangements based on contracts and legislation, with standardised rules and contractual relations for sending, clearing and settling of liabilities and instruments between participants.
The functioning of payment operations in the Republic of Croatia is regulated by a series of acts, which include: Payment System Act, Electronic Money Act, Act on the Implementation of EU Regulations Governing Payment Systems, Act on Settlement Finality in Payment and Financial Instruments Settlement Systems, as well as other EU regulations.
Payment services may be provided by credit institutions, electronic money institutions, small electronic money institutions, payment institutions, small payment institutions and registered account information providers.
Payment operations in the Republic of Croatia are carried out through three payment systems:
The Payment System Act governs payment services and their providers, the obligations of payment service providers, payment institutions and payment systems.
Payment services provided by service providers as their business activity include cash withdrawals and deposits, the execution of credit transfer payment transactions, standing orders, direct debits and money remittances, issuing of payment instruments and acquiring of payment transactions, execution of payment transactions through payment cards, payment initiation services and account information services.
In addition to the Payment System Act, the national payment system is also regulated by the Electronic Money Act, which governs electronic money and electronic money issuers, the issuance and redemption of electronic money, conditions for the establishment, operation and dissolution of electronic money institutions having their registered office in the Republic of Croatia.
The Electronic Money Act also governs the supervision of operation and conditions under which electronic money institutions having their registered office outside of the Republic of Croatia may operate in the Republic of Croatia.
Pursuant to the provisions of the above acts, the Croatian National Bank (CNB) also adopts subordinate legislation governing their implementation.