Answer ... Fintech companies and technologies have significantly affected the competitive landscape. The competition authorities have raised concerns over the challenges presented by these technologies. As the fintech sector is a young and evolving market, the competition authorities have questioned whether the existing competition regulations are sufficient to address the challenges foreseen, and whether traditional analysis of market shares and definitions can adequately capture the dynamics of the fintech market.
Generally, online platforms, access to customer data, standardisation and inter-operability can provide insight in the market behaviour and strategy of competitors, and may thus raise concerns of collusion or other anti-competitive behaviour. For instance, the structure of blockchain makes possible the implementation of more complex collusive agreements, making it easier to detect – and potentially to retaliate against – deviations from collusive agreements. Further, in relation to online payment service providers, competition concerns could arise in relation to access to the data of bank account users, particularly where such access is refused by a bank with a dominant position. Competition and developments relating to mobile payments systems are being monitored, as competition concerns may arise in relation to the granting of access to communication technology to other online payment providers.
Fintech companies have the potential to benefit consumers, as new technologies may reduce costs, increase efficiency and enhance transparency. They can also capture bank information, which is considered important to increase competition and innovation, and thus create opportunities for businesses and consumers.