Swift connects GPI to domestic faster payments rails

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Two months after a successful test to connect banks using the Global Payments Innovation service to faster payments rails in Singapore, Swift is launching a new service to connect with other domestic real-time payments systems.

The new service will deliver Swift's GPI cross-border payment service into domestic markets without extensive implementation costs or the adoption of new infrastructure.

Swift launched GPI more than two years ago in an effort to create a more efficient payments routing and messaging system within member banks. Based on the premise that using similar standards and procedures — and taking on new technology as needed — would foster faster and more secure payments, the GPI had an initial goal to eventually connect to domestic networks.

"At Swift, we are creating a future in which cross-border payments will be as convenient as domestic ones," Harry Newman, head of banking at Swift, said in a Monday press release. "It is time for the whole community to come together to seize this opportunity and establish a global real-time payments service."

In addition to connecting with Singapore's Fast and Secure Transfers for tests with 17 banks across seven countries, Swift also tested GPI connections to the New Payments Platform in Australia, resulting in payments to China in 18 seconds.

Most recently, Swift says it worked with 19 banks using the European Central Bank's Target Instant Payments Settlement (TIPS) platform to conduct tests sending cross-border payments from nine countries into Europe.

A speed of 41 seconds was achieved in a payment sent from Singapore, cleared via Germany, and credited to the end beneficiary account, Swift noted.

"We are seeing an acceleration of real-time payment schemes across all markets," Tom Halpin, global head of payments products at HSBC, said in the release. "The key driver is the modern digital customer who is always connected, values convenience and expects a great experience."

The combination of Swift GPI and domestic real-time payments is enabling HSBC to offer that experience across the world, Halpin said.

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