Source: European Parliament
Directive (EU) 2018/843 on money laundering and terrorist financing sets a limit of EUR 50 for remote payments for general-purpose anonymous prepaid cards. This provision was introduced and adopted on the basis that anonymous prepaid cards can easily be used to finance terrorist attacks and logistics. EUR 50 was considered the appropriate limit, having due regard for consumers’ need to use general-purpose prepaid instruments and so as not to prevent such instruments being used to promote social and financial inclusion.
In some Member States, businesses can avail of government policies allowing them to reward their employees up to a certain amount, free of tax. Prepaid gift cards are a popular mechanism used by many employers to this end.
With the outbreak of COVID-19 and the temporary closure of many retailers, online shopping is the only way some consumers can use their cards. The EUR 50 limit is, as a result, more restrictive than before.
Is this limit still appropriate given the significant, albeit temporary, change in consumer needs and behaviour?
Would the Commission consider temporarily changing this limit – without disregarding its original, vitally important purpose – while COVID-19 restrictions remain in place across the EU?