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Forecasts 2020

One of the Biggest Payment Companies Will Enter Israel in 2020, Says Banking Regulator

Hevda Ber, who will step down in April, spoke at Calcalist’s Forecasts 2020 conference held Tuesday in Tel Aviv

Raheli Bindman 16:4831.12.19
Israeli banking regulation has defined a triangle of goals—increasing competition, innovation, and efficiency, Israeli banking regulator Hedva Ber said Tuesday at Calcalist’s Forecasts 2020 conference, held in Tel Aviv in collaboration with Bank Hapoalim and Israel-based Psagot Investment House Ltd. Israeli regulators also created the credit card database, separated the credit card subsidiaries of the large banks to strengthen the small banks, and, for the first time in four decades, licensed a new bank, she said. “Together, this creates competitiveness.”


Ber also referred to the regulatory demands made by Israel’s newest and only digital bank to date. “Suitable regulation for a new bank does need to be provided and we gave new banks exemptions. We will listen to the comments we received and make a decision.”


Israeli banking regulator Hedva Ber. Photo: Yariv Katz Israeli banking regulator Hedva Ber. Photo: Yariv Katz



Today, there is much greater competition in the credit industry, especially for those who in the past had no access to credit, Ber said. This increased competition also poses new risks for weak clients, requiring balances, she said, adding that she is working towards that goal with the Israeli capital market regulator, Moshe Bareket.


Ber forecasted that in 2020, one of the leading global digital wallet providers will enter Israel, and that two others will arrive in 2021. “Israel is interesting because Israelis spend a lot with credit cards, and there are partnerships between the big-techs and the credit card companies. It will encourage competition and it is good for consumers, and I am not worried about it because it will be under the credit card companies we supervise. Within a year, we will leave the house without a wallet and pay via mobile.”