Amazon has just updated the help pages for KDP with a new policy. They're offering new payment options for authors and publishers in Europe. For the first time ever Amazon is willing to pay these authors via EBT rather than an expensive to process paper check.
We are pleased to announce Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) has new payment options available. You can update your account starting today for royalty payments to be made in April, 2013. Your account preferences can be set to receive royalty payments electronically across all marketplaces in British pounds or Euros. In order to be paid by Direct Deposit, your bank account will need to be located in the United Kingdom or in Europe.
It may have taken a few months, but Amazon has just shown us that if we complain loud enough they will listen.
That's a good thing, because Amazon's past insistence in paying authors in US dollars with a paper check was costing the authors a lot of money. Thanks to the fees charged by the banks (conversion, foreign check, etc) some authors were reporting that each paper check cost them upwards of $40. And let's not even talk about how long it took for the checks to clear.
There's no word yet on when Amazon plans to make similar payment options available to authors in the rest of the world, but I hope that day comes soon. There's no reason for Amazon to not be paying via one kind of electronic transfer or another. Smashwords likely has payment processing issues similar to Amazon's and its been using Paypal to pay all SW authors. That tells me that Amazon is facing institutional roadblocks, not technical or legal ones.
And it's about time those roadblocks were removed, don't you think?