Harmonisation in Europe around SWIFT/TWIST ISO 20022 payment standards

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August 2008 – The European Payment Council (EPC), the coordination body of the European banking industry in relation to payments, has embraced the ISO 20022 standards for the SEPA project. When designing the so-called SEPA Rulebooks for Credit Transfers and Direct Debit, the UNIFY (ISO 20022) XML Message standards developed by SWIFT, TWIST, OAGi, IFX and UN/CEFACT were always at their core.

The focus thus far has been on Rulebooks that would apply for payment messaging between banks. But national banking communities have interpreted the designs for credit transfers differently for the receipt of payment instructions from their customers. The differences in some specific detailed technical respects have now been recognised as undesirable by the EPC. It published in June 2008 proposals on harmonizing specifications in this area. When accepted by the national banking communities, the resulting corporate-to-bank standards for SEPA throughout the EU will be the customer-to-bank UNIFI (ISO 20022) XML Message Standards as originally developed jointly by SWIFT and TWIST.

TWIST Summer 2008 Newsletter: Encouraging Developments

To read the full EPC Sepa Credit Transfer Scheme Customer-To-Bank Implementation Guidelines please see attachment.



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