Voice of the Industry

The significance of borderless payments in today's global economy

Tuesday 20 February 2024 10:25 CET | Editor: Diana Lupuleac | Voice of the industry

Nina Huelsken, Associate, Frankfurt at Payments Consulting Network, analyses the crucial role of borderless payments in today’s global economy.


In a world where businesses and individuals are increasingly connected across borders, the significance of borderless payments cannot be overstated. Cross-border payments, the process of transferring money or making transactions between individuals, businesses, and financial institutions located in different countries, have become the lifeblood of the global economy. From multinational corporations to freelancers working remotely, to tourists exploring new horizons, or migrant workers sending money home to their families to pay for housing, education, or medical bills, borderless payments play a pivotal role in several industries.

During the 2023 edition of the Payments Leaders’ Summit in Rotterdam, I had the privilege of moderating a roundtable discussion with a group of seasoned experts. During our exchange of ideas, we delved into the challenges faced by businesses and financial institutions in navigating the complexities of cross-border payments.

In this article, we will explore the key takeaways from the summit, shedding light on innovative solutions and emerging trends that promise to reshape the landscape of international transactions.

1. Cross-border payments have come a long way from the days of slow, expensive, and complex international wire transfers.

Technological advancements, particularly in the fields of fintech and blockchain, have revolutionised the way we conduct cross-border transactions. These innovations have not only reduced the costs associated with cross-border payments but also significantly enhanced their speed and security.

2. One of the most significant advantages of borderless payments is the dismantling of financial silos.

Traditional banking systems often require multiple intermediaries, resulting in prolonged processing times and high fees. Through borderless payments, individuals and businesses gain the ability to transact directly, bypassing the need for middlemen. This streamlined peer-to-peer approach can be especially beneficial for small and medium-sized enterprises, which may not have the resources to navigate complex international banking networks.

3. The impact of borderless payments on global trade is profound.

The smooth and efficient flow of funds across borders is pivotal for international commerce. This ability to conduct cross-border transactions seamlessly and efficiently enables businesses to expand their customer base beyond domestic markets, fostering economic growth and job creation. Furthermore, it facilitates the import and export of goods and services, supporting the international supply chain.

The gig economy, characterised by freelancers and independent contractors working across borders, heavily relies on borderless payments. Platforms and freelancers working in fields like software development, content creation, and graphic design depend on the capacity to receive payments from clients worldwide. Borderless payments ensure that these workers can access their earnings without being hindered by geographical constraints.


Nina Huelsken, Associate, Frankfurt at Payments Consulting Network, analyses the crucial role of borderless payments in today’s global economy


4. Borderless payments have revolutionised the remittance process, making it faster and more cost-effective. 

Remittances, money sent by individuals working abroad to their families in their home countries, represent a crucial source of income for many developing nations. The reduction in fees associated with cross-border remittances translates to a higher portion of their funds reaching their intended recipients. This, in turn, serves to alleviate poverty and contributes to economic development in the receiving countries. 

Borderless payments also hold the potential to enhance financial inclusion on a global scale. Many individuals in underserved regions lack access to traditional banking services. By leveraging mobile banking and digital payment solutions, they can participate in the global economy, access and secure credit, and cultivate financial stability, even in the absence of a physical bank branch in their vicinity.


The ongoing technological advancements in the payments landscape are set to further revolutionise the way we conduct cross-border transactions. As the world continues to shrink and businesses expand their horizons, the significance of borderless payments will only continue to grow, reshaping industries and improving lives across the globe. 

The intense competition in cross-border payments, driven by lucrative opportunities, fuels a race between new and established players adopting innovative business models. This dynamic shift is propelled by changing consumer behaviours and heightened expectations, as individuals and corporations alike seek streamlined, transparent, and 24/7 real-time payment experiences.


Nina Huelsken, Associate, Frankfurt at Payments Consulting Network, analyses the crucial role of borderless payments in today’s global economy


Embracing these innovations is not just an option; it’s a necessity for maintaining a competitive edge in today’s rapidly evolving global economy. As businesses and individuals forge stronger international ties, the transformative power of borderless payments becomes increasingly undeniable.


This editorial piece was first published in The Paypers' Cross-Border Payments and Ecommerce Report 2023–2024, which taps into the fast-growing cross-border market and provides a comprehensive overview of trends and developments that are pivotal in this space, being the ultimate source of information for ecommerce businesses interested in expanding globally. 


About Nina Huelsken

Nina started working in the payments industry in 2005 and held several management positions at international financial institutions. She acts as a licencing expert for several working groups for cross-border payment providers.



About Payments Consulting Network

Payments Consulting Network provides advisory and market research services to the financial services and payments sectors, and it has a presence in Asia-Pacific, North America, Europe, Africa, and Latin America. The firm also supports organisations in the retail, hospitality, tourism, and not-for-profit sectors to optimise payment acceptance – in-store and online.

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Keywords: cross-border payments, payments , remittance, financial inclusion, B2B payments, P2P payments, supply chain finance
Categories: Payments & Commerce
Companies: Payments Consulting Network
Countries: World
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Payments & Commerce

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