BoE publishes payment standards consultation

The Bank of England (BoE) has published the responses to a consultation on the adoption of the ISO 20022 common global messaging standard for payments in the UK, with broad industry support for the plan.

The consultation - in conjunction with Pay.UK and the Payment Systems Regulator (PSR) - received over 70 responses from a range of stakeholders, from established banks to FinTechs and corporates, as well as a number of payments industry trade associations.

The responses were largely supportive of the proposals, in particular, there was broad consensus to introduce the Common Credit Message (CCM), which aims to harmonise messaging across the UK’s main interbank payment systems.

There was also wide support for how the CCM will be introduced for CHAPS payments, including when additional data such as the use of Legal Entity Identifiers (LEI) for transactions between financial institutions, will become mandatory.

Certain changes have been made to the proposals, to reflect industry feedback since the consultation was launched, and these will be reflected before implementation, the BoE noted.

The response also acted as a call for payments representatives to join a new Standards Advisory Panel to ensure that the industry has a voice in the strategic implementation of ISO 20022.

The statement insisted that the coordinated adoption of a single standard across UK payment systems should bring “significant and long term benefits for payment providers” and for the businesses and households they serve.

The move to this new standard will be introduced as part of a renewed Real Time Gross Settlement (RTGS) service for CHAPS payments, and the delivery of a New Payments Architecture (NPA) for retail payments.

Victoria Cleland, executive director for banking, payments and financial resilience at the BoE, said she was delighted with the breadth of responses from the payments industry. “We look forward to working with the industry to deliver a more innovative, harmonised, and resilient messaging standard for the UK.”

Pay.UK chief executive Paul Horlock added: “Adoption of this global messaging standard can deliver huge benefits to the UK and we look forward to continued close co-operation amongst the industry to help us deliver this project successfully.”

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