Payments Canada launches Lynx

With an increase of digital payments both at the commercial and consumer level, the modernisation of payments infrastructure is becoming increasingly important.

This week, infrastructure provider Payments Canada has announced the launch of the first release of Lynx which is Canada’s new high-value payment system. This system is replacing the Large Value Transfer System (LVTS) which the company in a press note said has been serving the Canadian high-value payment system for over 20 years.

This system is designated by the Bank of Canada as an important payment system under the Payment Clearing and Settlement Act, the system will process large values, time-critical payments with real-time settlement and will provide cyber security and resiliency capabilities, as reported by the press note.

Earlier this year, Payments Canada tapped Interac Corp for real-time payments system implementation in Canada.

The system has also been designed with the flexibility to support future technologies, including interfaces and APIs.

“The payments ecosystem is rapidly evolving”, said Tracey Black, President and CEO at Payments Canada. Adding further, “Lynx is an integral part of our broader payments modernization initiative to deliver the future of payments for Canada”.

The Lynx system will be owned and operated by Payments Canada and overseen by the Bank of Canada. 17 banks according to the press note will be included in the first phase. The second phase which is planned for late 2022 will introduce the ISO 20022 message standard. This ISO 20022 message standard will assist Canadian financial institutions in meeting SWIFT’s ISO 20022 global requirements.

Payments Canada is a public purpose organization that owns and operates Canada’s payments systems. In 2020 alone, the organisation cleared and settled over $107 trillion. This included payments made over debit card payments, pre-authorized debits, direct deposits, bill payments, wire payments and cheques initiated and received by Canadians and Canadian businesses.