Experts sought for payments industry consultation

Joe McGrath
05 Feb 2020

Members of the banking and payments community are invited to comment on the suitability and application of a new global standard for the UK’s new clearing and settlements infrastructure.

The consultation, launched by Pay.UK, the UK’s retail payments authority, is designed to gather views on the suitability of the global standard ISO 20022 as part of the New Payments Architecture (NPA).

The authority is seeking feedback from payment service providers, end user organisations, trade bodies and anyone with a vested interest in payments, on defining the ISO 20022 standard and the business rules that apply to this standard.

The industry has until 31 March 2020 to provide feedback by downloading the consultation from the Pay.UK website, with the findings and conclusions due to be published by Pay.UK during the second half of 2020.

Kate Frankish, director of standards and strategy at Pay.UK, said: “This is a unique opportunity to make the UK’s payment systems work more efficiently for everyone that uses them and we welcome views that will help us shape and define the adoption of standards and rules into the New Payments Architecture.”

The NPA is a new clearing and settlement infrastructure for all UK retail payments that is being developed by Pay.UK and will enable organisations to exchange electronic payments data in a common format.

On its website, Pay.UK called the consultation a “once in a generation opportunity to help define standards for the NPA”.

Pay.UK’s Standards Authority coordinates the standardisation activities of the UK’s financial services on behalf of participants, the payments industry and other stakeholders.

Last year, the Standards Authority set up an advisory group – the Industry Standards Coordination Committee – with members including standards experts from across the payments and financial services industry, UK government and end user communities, to help guide the development of the NPA standard.

It also launched the joint Standards Advisory Panel (SAP) with the Bank of England, an industry-facing body advising on the strategic implementation of ISO 20022 across the UK’s retail and wholesale payment systems.

As the single operator for all UK retail payments, Pay.UK’s systems processed more than 9bn transactions in 2019 via direct debits, direct credits, faster payments and cheque payments, valued at more than £7trn.

Pay.UK reported a new record for automated payments was set in November last year, with over 124m payments processed in one day through its direct debit and Bacs direct credit systems.

This was one million more than the previous high set in 2018 and the equivalent of 8m payments each hour the processing window was open.

Those seeking more information on Pay.UK or ISO20022 should visit organisation’s website, here.