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Retail Payments Advisory Committee: Terms of Reference

Learn about the Retail Payments Advisory Committee (RPAC) mandate, its membership and proceedings.


The Retail Payments Advisory Committee (RPAC) was a forum to provide advice and industry expertise to the Bank of Canada (Bank) as the Bank designed and operationalized the Retail Payments Supervisory Framework. In particular, RPAC In particular, RPAC provided advice and expertise to support the Bank of Canada on the following topics:

  • Supervisory framework: facilitating the Bank’s understanding of the retail payments segment of the financial ecosystem and providing considerations for the Bank’s supervisory approaches;
  • Operational design: offering suggestions on the framework’s overall design, including the creation of registration and reporting processes, the IT system, and the website;
  • Industry developments: raising relevant issues for discussion, identifying areas of research and considering how the Bank of Canada can best meet its new supervisory mandate.


RPAC RPAC was chaired by a representative of the Bank of Canada.

Expectations of the Chair

The Chair was responsible for selecting members of RPAC. In addition, the Chair was responsible for tabling open issues for discussion in relation to Retail Payments Supervision. The Chair organized and hosted RPAC meetings as well as share documents necessary to facilitate discussions.


Membership selection

Membership of RPAC was determined by the Chair. The Chair considered size, maturity, geographic location, and type of services provided in order to select members that are broadly representative of payment service providers. Members were invited based on a wide range of considerations, including the ability to engage effectively on a broad range of complex policy and technical issues, as well as general issues relevant to the regulatory frameworks applicable to retail payments.

Membership was extended by the Chair to an organization. The organization was responsible for selecting an appropriate representative to sit on RPAC. Representatives were expected to be familiar with and able to make decisions on risk mitigation and regulatory compliance options.

Expectations of members

Members were expected to sit on RPAC for the full term of one year.

Members represented their firms and were able to speak on behalf of their organization and have knowledge with respect to a range of topics in their organization, including operations, risk management, technical issues, and compliance. Members actively discussed policy issues, shared best practices, shared organizational concerns, and provided potential solutions.

Members were expected to dedicate the time and resources to the work of RPAC and any applicable sub-committees. Members were also expected to attend regularly scheduled meetings in person or via video conference.

Members were expected to be aware of their obligations under the Competition Act and avoid the disclosure of any competitively sensitive information. Members were to inform the Chair of any Competition Act concerns of which they became aware and which arise from the Committee’s discussions.

Depending on the topic(s), members sometimes brought additional experts from their organization to participate in meetings with the permission of the Chair.


RPAC met six times during its term.

The Chair of RPAC may have invited the Department of Finance Canada or other agencies to attend relevant meetings. RPAC from time to time drew on experts from the industry to inform the dialogue on select issues.

On specific, technical topics, a sub-group of RPAC members was occasionally asked to provide feedback outside the scheduled RPAC meetings.

Proceedings and documents

The Bank was present at all RPAC meetings and any sub-group meetings and performed the secretariat duties for RPAC.

Any discussion material was circulated to RPAC members by the Chair three weeks in advance of a meeting and was also made public prior to or immediately following the meeting. High-level summaries of meetings were taken on a non-attribution basis and made available to all members. The summary was made public after members had an opportunity to review and provide feedback.

Members were invited to provide input (submissions, comments, etc.) to the Bank at any time on retail payments-related issues. The Bank will maintain the confidentiality of all information it receives from all members, except to the extent that the information may be public knowledge or in the event that the Bank is required by law, including the Access to Information Act, to release the information. The Access to Information Act outlines the grounds upon which the Bank can refuse to disclose third-party information. In the event that the Bank receives a request for information supplied by a member, the Bank will consult the third party to ensure that the Bank has a full understanding of the sensitivity of the information, and the member will be provided the opportunity to explain why the information requested is confidential.

Information shared with RPAC will be treated as confidential unless there is consent to share outside of RPAC. Members have the right to submit, verbally or in writing, sensitive information to the Chair without the information being made available to the rest of the members.

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