SWIFT Unveils New Payments Initiative Backed by 45 Banks

SWIFT, a global provider of financial messaging services, has unveiled a new global payments innovation initiative, heralded by the membership of forty-five leading banks and investing institutions, according to a SWIFT statement.

The collection of banks enrolled in SWIFT’s global payments initiative include leading players from every major financial nexus and economic bloc in the world, including Europe, Asia-Pacific (APAC), Africa, and the Americas – SWIFT foresees additional banks joining in the upcoming months with the pilot of the new initiative eyeing an early 2016 start date.

The overall impetus behind SWIFT’s global payments initiative is the enhancement of cross-border transactions via the leveraging of SWIFT’s messaging platform capabilities and global outreach. In conjunction with industry players, SWIFT has also designed a new service level agreement (SLA) rulebook, which subsequently provides the comprehensive framework for smart collaboration between banks.

In its first iteration, the new service will be relegated to a focus on business-to-business (B2B) payments, with the aim of helping corporates grow and develop their international business. This will also see the provision of features including same day use of funds, transparency and predictability of fees, end-to-end payments tracking, among others.

According to Christian Sarafidis, Chief Marketing Officer at SWIFT, in a recent statement on the initiative: “Such strong participation from major banks all around the world is proof of the importance of this global payments innovation initiative and of their commitment to offering greater speed, transparency and predictability in cross-border payments.”

“Designed for the corporate treasurer, this initiative will enable banks to dramatically improve their customers’ cross-border payments experience. Leveraging SWIFT’s global community and the innovative application of its proven technology, the new service should find rapid adoption and make a hugely positive impact on the global payments landscape,” added Wim Raymaekers, Head of Correspondent Banking at SWIFT, in an accompanying statement.

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