SWIFT announces global instant payments service
Global payments consortium SWIFT has announced the launch of a service to deliver global instant payments by integrating gpi, its real-time cross-border payments service, into domestic instant payments systems around the world.
Through a combination of gpi and domestic real-time payments networks, SWIFT, together with gpi banks, will facilitate instant international payments with up-front fee and foreign exchange transparency for senders, while also ensuring the availability of instant cross-border payments globally.
SWIFT says this means that banks can leverage their existing investments to deliver a better service to their customers. Integrating gpi, through banks, into domestic real-time payment systems reuses existing cross-border and domestic payments infrastructure, thereby minimising implementation costs and avoiding the complexities of adopting new infrastructure. The service will be available to all types of banks’ end customers, from large multinationals to SMEs, and from retail to e-commerce platforms.
SWIFT says that several global trials have demonstrated its ability to deliver international payments, end-to-end in just a few seconds through gpi combined with domestic real-time systems:
- Successful trials with the New Payments Platform (NPP) in Australia delivered payments between Australia and China in 18 seconds.
- A trial in Singapore with Fast And Secure Transfers (FAST), involving 17 banks across seven countries, saw the fastest payment in just 13 seconds and payments between all continents settled within 25 seconds.
- A trial has recently concluded in Europe between the European Central Bank (ECB), SWIFT and a group of 19 banks using the TARGET Instant Payments Settlement (TIPS) platform. The trial conducted tests with 12 banks sending cross-border payments from 9 countries (Australia, China, Germany, Hong Kong, Italy, Netherlands, Russia, Thailand and the US) into Europe via five banks. A speed of 41 seconds has already been achieved in a payment sent from Singapore, cleared via Germany, and credited to the end beneficiary account, with further progress expected as the global instant service is rolled out.