SWIFT’s ISO 20022 services for cross-border payments ready for customer testing with launch of In-flow Translation

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  • Complete environment ready for customer testing
  • Available 12 months before migration period begins
  • Suite of test services includes network-based ISO 20022 to MT (‘in-flow’) translation
  • Production services will support the industry’s adoption of the new standard 

Brussels: SWIFT today announces the availability of its new In-flow Translation service and confirms that it now offers a full ISO 20022 customer testing environment for cross-border payments. In-flow Translation will enable financial institutions to realise the benefits of rich data when they migrate to ISO 20022, even if their counterparts have not yet adopted the standard. The availability of a test environment means that customers can now prepare for ISO 20022 a year before it goes live. 

The service translates rich ISO 20022 messages into the existing MT format for banks that are not ready to process ISO 20022 messages immediately – and it ensures both message formats are delivered so customers always have complete data. This ensures that all financial institutions on the SWIFT network can continue to transact as normal during the industry’s migration, which starts in November 2022 and runs to November 2025. 

SWIFT has made In-flow Translation available for testing early to help banks familiarise themselves with ISO 20022 and gain experience in the new operational environment. Early adopters will be able to start using the service from August 2022 on an opt-in only basis.  All banks will be automatically enrolled in the service in November 2022 to coincide with the mandatory start of cross-border migration and the go-live of ISO 20022 for high-value payments in the Eurozone. 

Stephen Lindsay, Business Lead, SWIFT Platform, said: “One of the guiding principles behind our strategy for instant and frictionless payments is to ensure that nobody is left behind and that institutions are able to migrate in a way that suits them and their customers. We are delivering on this promise through the launch of In-flow Translation and the completion of the customer testing environment for ISO 20022, ensuring our community has plenty of time to prepare for the new standard. The move to ISO 20022 is a key component of our strategy that will unlock significant business benefits for banks. In-flow Translation will be vital to making the transition as smooth as possible by supporting interoperability between messages types.”

By enabling richer, better-structured data to be carried in payments messages, ISO 20022 will provide for an improved end-user experience and forms a key building block on which the future of the financial industry will be built. 

Leveraging its unrivalled global network of more than 11,000 institutions and 4 billion accounts in 200 countries, SWIFT is taking action to minimise disruption and ensure that its community is ready for the start of migration, including those banks that will not initially adopt ISO 20022 in the back-office. The completion of the test environment, including In-Flow Translation, means banks will have a full year to familiarise themselves with the mandatory changes that are coming.

About SWIFT:

SWIFT is a global member owned cooperative and the world’s leading provider of secure financial messaging services. We provide our community with a platform for messaging and standards for communicating, and we offer products and services to facilitate access and integration, identification, analysis and regulatory compliance. 

Our messaging platform, products and services connect more than 11,000 banking and securities organisations, market infrastructures and corporate customers in more than 200 countries and territories. While SWIFT does not hold funds or manage accounts on behalf of customers, we enable our global community of users to communicate securely, exchanging standardised financial messages in a reliable way, thereby supporting global and local financial flows, as well as trade and commerce all around the world. 

As their trusted provider, we relentlessly pursue operational excellence; we support our community in addressing cyber threats; and we continually seek ways to lower costs, reduce risks and eliminate operational inefficiencies. Our products and services support our community’s access and integration, business intelligence, reference data and financial crime compliance needs. SWIFT also brings the financial community together – at global, regional and local levels – to shape market practice, define standards and debate issues of mutual interest or concern. 

Headquartered in Belgium, SWIFT’s international governance and oversight reinforces the neutral, global character of its cooperative structure. SWIFT’s global office network ensures an active presence in all the major financial centres.