Banking News

More than 60 global banks go live with Swift's global payments innovation

More than 60 global banks go live with Swift’s global payments innovation

(16 February 2017 – Global) Major global transaction banks are now live with Swift’s global payments innovation (gpi) initiative.

gpi, a new scheme that promises to deliver greater speed, transparency and end to end tracking in international payments, was first announced by Swift at its annual Sibos conference in 2015.

A number of milestones were unveiled the following year at Sibos in Geneva. By then, more than 70 correspondent banks had signed up to the gpi.

The project went into live production in January, with more than 70 correspondent banks participating, including: ABN Amro, Bank of China, BBVA, Citi, Danske Bank, DBS Bank, Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC), ING Bank, Intesa Sanpaolo, Nordea Bank, Standard Chartered and UniCredit.

Swift says “numerous additional banks” will join the gpi initiative in the coming months.

“A year ago the global financial community pledged to dramatically improve the cross-border payments experience, and today marks a major milestone in delivering on that promise,” states Christian Sarafidis, chief marketing officer at Swift.

gpi’s features include the Tracker, which “allows banks to provide corporate treasurers with a real-time, end-to-end view on the status of their payments, including confirmations when payments have been credited to beneficiaries’ accounts; and the Observer, a quality assurance tool that monitors participants’ adherence to the gpi business rules.

“Treasurers also now have certainty that remittance information, such as invoice references, are transferred unaltered to the beneficiary,” Swift states.

The next phase of the platform has commenced, with design focusing on digital capabilities and further enhancements such as “a rich payment data service”.

gpi is also exploring blockchain/distributed ledger technology (DLT) for real-time Nostro account reconciliation.

Swift elaborated on its gpi at a recent media briefing. The firm’s head of market initiatives EMEA, Harry Newman, calls gpi the “largest innovation in the last 30 years in correspondent banking” and that 12 banks are live on it.

According to Swift, it plans to roll out gpi to “thousands” of banks, however further details on timelines weren’t provided. Swift said that while it has more than 60 country corridors currently, the ambition is for all countries to be live by the end of 2017.

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