Sandbox is now a reality. Why was it so hotly anticipated?

One of the most eagerly awaited developments in the Fintech sector is now a reality: The creation of a sandbox, a controlled test space to accompany the digital transformation of the financial system, is now a reality.

The Draft Law for the digital transformation of the financial system was unanimously approved on September 17th by the Commission for Economic Affairs and the Digital Transformation.

The creation of this sandbox was urgently needed by the sector. Other countries, including the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, and Switzerland already boasted test spaces for financial companies to test and approve their disruptive solutions. In fact, the United Kingdom has now launched a second round, adapted to the circumstances caused by COVID-19.

As indicated by Xavier Codó in relation to the Spanish sandbox, “there is still a huge amount of work to do, in particular from a regulatory and legal perspective, to allow new projects to flourish in a stable, dedicated system. The traditional rules are too rigid and impede the scalability of innovative businesses. The creation of a sandbox was urgently needed, and we’re finally on the right path”.

What exactly is a sandbox?

As mentioned above, a sandbox is a test space for financial companies to test and approve new solutions. This space is particularly useful for fintech companies, which tend to be more proactive when it comes to developing and proposing disruptive solutions, although the entire financial ecosystem is set to benefit.

The test environment also makes it possible to develop innovative technological projects adapted to the legal framework in force, ensuring that the process advances effectively and safely for all users.

What is in it for companies and users?

The number of digital banking users has grown exponentially in recent years, with the COVID-19 pandemic speeding up this phenomenon further still. The creation of this sandbox will allow companies to test and launch innovative, secure, and efficient solutions onto the market that improve digital financial processes, such as on-boarding, online loan applications, or simple day-to-day transactions. From the outset, companies will obviously benefit in terms of their competitiveness; however, they will also be able to improve cost control and monitor the functionality of the solution before it is launched.

The user experience will also be enhanced, as they will benefit from more efficient, faster, and more secure solutions. Furthermore, they will have access to a wider range of high-quality services at more competitive prices.

Ready, set, but when will it be time to go? When will this space be implemented and come online? The COVID-19 epidemic has pushed back the approval of the Draft Law; this is despite, paradoxically, the creation of the sandbox becoming even more necessary, as during lockdown the use of digital channels has soared amongst sectors of the population that did not regularly use them. Disruptive, efficient, and secure solutions are no longer an option: they are urgently needed.