Credit: SWIFT

Credit: SWIFT

SWIFT to extend gpi Tracker to all payment messages from November 2018

SWIFT (Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication) announced on 23 March that it is extending its gpi Tracker to cover all payment instructions sent across the network. This will enable gpi banks to track all their SWIFT payment instructions at all times, providing them full visibility over all their payment activity.

The Tracker, available since May 2017, enables banks that have signed up to SWIFT gpi to track their gpi payments in real-time. The Tracker can be updated by FIN message or via API. It can be accessed via a graphic user interface (GUI) and also via API calls to allow the service to be embedded in other back-office systems.

The Tracker provides automatic status updates to all gpi banks involved in any gpi payment chain and allows them to confirm when a payment has been completed. The Tracker also facilitates more accurate reconciliation of payments and invoices, helps optimise liquidity with improved cash forecasts and reduces exposure to FX (foreign exchange) risk, with same-day processing of funds in beneficiaries’ time zones. However, the Tracker was only available for transfers within the gpi network.

From 18 November this year, a unique end-to-end transaction reference (UETR) will be included in all payment instructions carried between all 11,000 customers on SWIFT across more than 200 countries and territories.

The introduction of the UETR in payment instructions will be effected through the mandatory annual Standards MT Release in November. Following the release, all SWIFT customers will be required to include the UETR in their payment instructions, irrespective of whether they are gpi banks and or whether they are executing gpi payments, introducing greater transparency and reducing costs.

“The extension of the Tracker to non-gpi payments is a major step forward. It will significantly extend transparency and it will drive more banks to join the service, rapidly making gpi the new normal in cross-border payments”, said Navinder Duggal, Group Head of Cash Product Management from DBS, one of the early gpi adopters in Asia.

Lars Sjögren, Global Head of Transaction Banking, Danske Bank, commented, “Enabling end-to-end tracking of all payment instructions through to the end destination is a game-changer. Until last year, it was impossible for banks to gather this information on behalf of their customers, but the introduction of the gpi Tracker has addressed this challenge head on, transforming cross-border payments and dramatically improving the service that banks can offer to their customers in a very cost efficient way.”

“SWIFT gpi has been hugely beneficial for banks and their customers since its launch, but extending this tracking facility across all payments traffic will be truly transformational. These expanded tracking capabilities are part of a series of gpi services we will roll out in 2018 to further improve the cross-border payments experience, enable banks to provide a far superior service to their customers and rapidly attract more banks to join,” added Harry Newman, Head of Payments at SWIFT.

SWIFT gpi was launched in 2017 and it accounts for 10% of SWIFT cross border payment traffic, enabling more than a hundred billion dollars to be transferred across the world rapidly and securely every day.

More than 150 banks, representing over 78% of SWIFT’s cross-border payments traffic, have signed up to the service, sending hundreds of thousands of payments daily across 220 country corridors - including major corridors such as USA-China, where gpi already accounts for more than 25% of payment traffic. Nearly 50% of gpi payments are completed in less than 30 minutes, many within seconds.

The aim is to make SWIFT gpi the standard for all cross-border payments made on the SWIFT network by the end of 2020.

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