The results or trials conducted in Singapore showed payments between all countries settled within 25 seconds. SWIFT plans to go live with the ‘gpi instant’ service globally by December-end
Cross-border payment provider SWIFT is looking at running tests for instant international settlements with the local network in India to ensure higher speed and end-to-end transparency in transactions across the globe.
While SWIFT’s global payments innovation (gpi) provides cross-border payments service to member banks, the new ‘gpi instant’ platform will connect domestic switches to include non-gpi banks as well.
"After ensuring efficiency, transparency and trackability in cross-border payments, we are now connecting them to local networks. So, we are trying to integrate with local switches to complete the last leg of the transaction,” said Kiran Shetty, Chief Executive Officer and Regional Head, India and South Asia, SWIFT.
The ‘gpi instant’ service has already been tested with New Payments Platform (NPP) in Australia and Fast & Secure Transfers (FAST) in Singapore. SWIFT is now looking at running trials with the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI), among other regions, going forward.
“We’ve had successful pilots in Singapore and Australia. The tests prove that cross-border to the final beneficiary can also happen within seconds. We are now looking to move into other real-time markets like India. We want to make sure that the value is derived at every level,” Shetty added.
The trial conducted in Singapore last month involved 17 banks across seven countries. The results showed payments between all countries settle within 25 seconds. SWIFT plans to go live with the ‘gpi instant’ service globally by end of this year.
In India, 11 banks including State Bank of India, ICICI Bank and HDFC Bank have signed up for the gpi network so far and are in the process of connecting with the cross-border payments platform. However, ‘gpi instant’ transactions made to accounts with other banks, which use the NPCI switch, will also be traceable .
Apart from speed, the network provides end-to-end visibility in a transaction. For instance, a sender will be able to track movement of their transactions till it reaches the beneficiary. It can also help authorities track suspicious transactions, amid rising cases of financial frauds and anti-money laundering activities.