EBA Clearing, SIA to partner on real-time payments service

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EBA Clearing and Italy’s SIA have signed a letter of intent for the technical delivery of a pan-European instant payments service for financial institutions.

Paris-headquartered EBA Clearing, which is wholly owned by its 53 member banks, said that the real-time infrastructure solution will be based on European Payments Council (EPC) scheme specifications and should be ready by the fourth quarter of 2017.

SIA’s role will be to support EBA Clearing as technical solution provider in creating and implementing the real-time payment system.

“SIA was identified as the preferred provider for this pan-European infrastructure delivery project during a request for proposal (RFP) process launched in October 2015,” stated EBA Clearing. “The Italy-based payment processor is one of Europe’s leading companies in the design, creation and management of technology infrastructures and services for financial institutions and market infrastructure providers

The project represents the second major market infrastructure development project between the two, following the implementation of Europe’s private-industry single euro payments area (SEPA) platform STEP2. SIA also serves as a technical operator of STEP2, which typically processes over 40m SEPA transactions per day.

“Signing a letter of intent represents a significant milestone in our company’s journey towards delivering a pan-European infrastructure solution for instant payments in co-operation with SIA,” said Hays Littlejohn, chief executive officer (CEO) of EBA Clearing.

“As a next step, we are now inviting interested payment service providers to join our initiative. We look forward to working with SIA and these pilot users on the development of a platform that can be used for instant payments both at a domestic and cross-border level.”

EBA Clearing added that the new solution is geared at handling any euro transactions compliant with the instant payment definition and requirements formulated by the Euro Retail Payments Board (ERPB) in late 2014; so should support any real-time payment products that payment service providers in Europe decide to offer to their customers.

It is planned that the service will be in line with the global messaging standards for instant payments (ISO 20022) and fully compliant with the SCTInst Scheme being created by the EPC.

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