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SWIFT’s ISO 20022 Harmonisation Project Moves Forward

SWIFT announces that the ISO 20022 Harmonisation Charter project, an industry driven framework to support the global rollout of ISO 20022, is making great strides with key financial market infrastructures (FMIs) and market practice groups. Over 20 market infrastructure providers have endorsed the Charter, with other participating organisations including payments associations, market practice groups, central banks and exchange groups.

Both the Payments Market Practice Group (PMPG) and the Securities Market Practice Group (SMPG) are now formally supporting the ISO 20022 harmonisation charter.  The Hong Kong Stock Exchange in Asia as well as an additional number of European CSDs and Central Banks have followed suit and will be implementing ISO 20022 using the best practices set out in the Charter. Eleven FMIs have finalised their updated ISO 20022 specifications and added the new information to MyStandards, SWIFT’s web platform that enables market participants to manage and access standards specifications in a collaborative environment.

“In the year since we launched the ISO 20022 harmonisation charter, the global support for the initiative has grown exponentially,” says Patrik Neutjens, ISO 20022 Programme Director, at SWIFT. We are very pleased with the great effort that has been put forward by the FMI community and we look forward to welcoming additional participants as ISO 20022 implementation plans become more defined.”

SWIFT’s ISO 20022 harmonisation project consists of a Charter, which is based on four best practice principles, and serves as a way for FMIs to confirm their support for SWIFT’s recommendations and their willingness to implement the principles into their own ISO 20022 initiatives.

The four principles of the Charter require FMIs to:

1)  Share information between FMIs about ISO 20022 usage;

2)  Adhere to global market practice where it exists and contribute to new global market practice initiatives;

3)  Introduce stricter message version control and release management process and timing, in line with the recently defined processes;

4)  Publish up-to-date information about standards on a common platform, including market practice compliance, messages and versions used and message release timeline.

To support the Charter, SWIFT recently formed the high value payment systems (HVPS) plus or HVPS+ task force, a global market practice group of FMIs and banks to address the evolving ISO 20022 standards requirements of HVPS providers. Sponsored by the PMPG, HVPS+ will build on the existing HVPS market practice documented in MyStandards that focuses on ensuring interoperability with FIN messages in the cross-border space. The new group, which goes beyond current market practice, will deliver an additional set of ISO 20022 market practice guidelines for HVPS, taking into account the evolving needs of FMIs and their members, including more structured, accurate and richer end-to-end data..