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PAYMENT SYSTEM

Introduction

 
Armenian legislation provides the Central Bank of Armenia with the power to regulate and supervise the payment and settlement system activities. Under this power the Central Bank participates in drafting of laws regulating the payment and settlement area, enacts sub-legislative acts (Legislative Acts) regulating payment and settlement relations, determines the forms of statistical reports for the payment area and the procedure for reporting by Armenian banks and other organizations.
In November 2004 the National Assembly of RA adopted the Armenia Law “On Payment Systems and Payment service Organizations”, which entered into force on June 28, 2005.
The objectives of this Law are to regulate and administer i) the activities of payment and settlement systems, ii) the procedure and conditions of the oversight of this activity, iii) as well as to determine rules for settlements and the basic definitions of the payment and settlement area.
The Law provides non-bank organizations with some competency to render payment and settlement services on the basis of licence issued by the Central Bank. The Law provides the following types of licences of payment and settlement organizations:
  1. licence to carry out money transfers, on the basis of which money transmitters accept and make payments without opening bank accounts;
  2. licence to carry out processing and clearing of payment instruments and payment and settlement documents (hereinafter processing and clearing), on the basis of which processing and clearing organizations carry out such business for a third party.
 Apart from the Armenian banks, the money transfer organizations also are allowed to carry out remittances in Armenia, according to the current legislation. Once such organizations are issued a respective activity license, they can be allowed to effect money remittances for customers, without opening bank accounts.
At present, the ‘Armenian Card’ CJSC has been issued an activity license for processing and clearing of operations by ArCa cards and processing of operations by Visa and MasterCard.
For further development and regulation in the payments and settlement area, the Central Bank is designing, administering and introducing new systems and non-cash payment schemes as well as developing a relevant legislative framework. (Payment and settlement system).
PAYMENT AND SETTLEMENT AREA LEGISLATION
The payment and settlement area of the Republic of Armenia is regulated through the Civil Code of RA, laws of RA, legislative acts of the CBA, regulations for payment and settlement systems, as well as through contracts/agreements between the parties involved in payment and settlement area.
Under the Armenian Law “On Payment Systems and Payment service Organizations”, some legal acts and other documents were drafted and adopted during the year 2005, aimed at regulating the process of licensing of payment service organizations, participation of such organizationin payment and settlement systems and getting the permission for it.
The laws of the Republic of Armenia which regulate the Armenian payment and settlement area are:
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