Instant Payments: A Global View

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"Instant Payments: A Global View", report contains an in-depth review of instant payment systems around the world, including analysis of the key systems currently in place, and their strengths and weaknesses.

Instant payment systems are becoming increasingly prevalent worldwide, as central banks and other national bodies react to the drastic increase in electronic payment volume that has taken place over the past decade. The “instant” payment aspect of these new systems is also derived from consumer demand for instant gratification, itself arising from the rapid development of access to information, products, and services on the internet.

Specifically the report –
– Defines the term “instant payments” as it applies to consumer/retail payments.
– Identifies the main features of instant payment systems and the consumer needs these serve.
– Analyzes the instant payment systems currently in place in key markets in Europe, Asia, Africa, and the Americas.
– Provides an in-depth analysis of the instant payment systems in place in the UK and Singapore, as well as the system being developed in Australia.


– In today’s connected world consumers have come to expect instant fund transfers in the same way they expect instant access to information on their computers or smartphones.

– Fast payment systems are live in 18 markets globally, and are planned in 24 markets – these systems are still the exception rather than the rule, but this is expected to change in the near future.

– The benefits of instant payment systems for banks and other payment service providers vary from increased potential to deliver new services to customers, to efficiencies created through the shift from paper-based to electronic payments, to strengthening relationships with current customers and facilitating customer acquisition.

Reasons to Buy

– Understand the context (both in terms of market-level drivers and consumer drivers) behind the development of instant payment systems.

– Learn about the key features of instant payment systems worldwide, which players use them, and what advantages they offer to consumers.

– Gain an in-depth understanding of the latest system in development: the New Payments Platform in Australia.

Danske Bank

Table of Contents

Table of Contents


1.1. Definition of instant payments 1

1.2. Key findings 1

1.3. Critical success factors 1


2.1. Why develop an immediate payment system? 7

2.1.1. Instant payment is the catalyst for the future of banking 7

2.1.2. Cost savings from immediate payments will come first, revenues later 9


3.1. The digital economy has led to the implementation of instant payments in most markets 12

3.2. Definition of key terms 13

3.2.1. Real-time retail payment system vs real-time gross settlement 13

3.2.2. Instant payments 14


4.1. Why are instant payments being implemented? 15

4.1.1. Central banks are largely behind the push for instant payments 15

4.1.2. The rapid development of communication technologies brings new possibilities for payments 16

4.1.3. Instant payment systems provide an opportunity to upgrade security 17

4.1.4. Consumer non-cash payment volumes have risen at a rapid rate, straining older systems 17


5.1. Asia Pacific 20

5.1.1. Japan led the world in faster payments but with a system that was limited in scope 20

5.1.2. Instant payment development in South Korea was influenced by its electronic industry and government 21

5.1.3. Economics determined the need for instant payment in China 22

5.1.4. India hopes to reduce dependence on cash through instant payments 24

5.2. South America 25

5.2.1. Brazil – SITRAF (2002) 25

5.2.2. Chile – Transferencias en Linea (2008) 26

5.2.3. Mexico – Sistema de pagos electronicos interbancarios (2004) 26

5.3. Middle East and Africa 26

5.3.1. South Africa – Real-Time Clearing (2006) 26

5.3.2. Nigeria – NIBSS Instant Payment (2011) 27

5.3.3. Turkey – Retail Payment System (2012) 27

5.4. Europe 27

5.4.1. Denmark wanted a platform that could make P2P payments in true real-time 27

5.4.2. Poland offers two instant payment platforms 27


6.1. UK: Faster Payments Scheme 29

6.1.1. Credit transfer usage has grown by almost 30% since the inception of Faster Payments 29

6.2. Background 30

6.2.1. Cash and cheque P2P transfers are decreasing, largely due to the FPS 35

6.3. Singapore: Fast and Secure Transfers (FAST) 36

6.3.1. FAST brought true instant payments to Singapore, accelerating the shift away from cash 36

6.3.2. The FAST platform includes push and pull credits, increasing payment flexibility 36

6.3.3. Background 38

6.3.4. FAST: participating banks 38

6.3.5. FAST is driving innovation in the payments market 39

6.4. Sweden: Payments in Real Time (BiR) 42

6.4.1. Payments in Real Time is a big step towards a cashless society 42

6.4.2. Background 43

6.4.3. P2P payment was the key overlay of the BiR system 44


7.1. The NPP should hit the ground running when it launches 48

7.1.1. The New Payment Platform is seven years in the making 48

7.1.2. The New Payment Platform will propel Australia closer towards being a cashless society 51

7.2. The NPP will bring greater competition in e-commerce 52

7.2.1. The NPP can work with new digital wallets such as Afterpay and ZipPay, giving rise to disintermediation in e-commerce 53

7.3. Rising P2P payments in Australia highlight the need for instant payment infrastructure 54

7.3.1. NPP participants 55


8.1. Abbreviations and acronyms 57

8.2. Methodology 58

8.3. Bibliography 59

8.4. Further reading 60


List of Tables

Table 1: Participating banks of the Faster Payments Scheme 34

Table 2: FAST coverage encompasses all domestic and major foreign banks 38

Table 3: New Payment Platform members 56


List of Figures

Figure 1: Innovative banks are highly valued among consumers 8

Figure 2: Sweden’s Swish app can earn $0.17-0.23 per SME transaction 10

Figure 3: There are numerous instant payment services now operating worldwide 13

Figure 4: Electronic transfers are forecast to reach $1,222.3tn in 2017 for the 73 markets covered 16

Figure 5: Payment settlement platforms needs to be prepared to handle greater volumes 18

Figure 6: Most countries still do not have an instant payment system in place 19

Figure 7: Cash transactions remain the preferred transaction method in Japan 20

Figure 8: Electronic payment transfer in South Korea has been reducing the use of cash 22

Figure 9: Electronic transfers in China are still small in comparison to cash, but are rapidly gaining market share 23

Figure 10: Cash use in India is stalling as banking and payments are becoming more digitized 24

Figure 11: Instant payments drive growth in electronic payments 29

Figure 12: After almost a decade since implementation, FPS is still growing at a fast pace 31

Figure 13: The convenience of instant payment is driving P2P payments 35

Figure 14: Credit transfers saw a marked increase after the launch of FAST in Singapore 36

Figure 15: The frequency of P2P transfers has increased 40

Figure 16: OCBC’s Pay Anyone app was the first in the market to enable purchases without needing their bank details 41

Figure 17: BiR has accelerated the trend towards a cashless society in Sweden 42

Figure 18: P2P payments are becoming more frequent as the friction has been taken out of transfers 44

Figure 19: Swish has already built its user base and is now focusing on improving functionality in the P2B market 46

Figure 20: Osko offers fast, secure instant payments with messaging capabilities 51

Figure 21: Australia is shifting away from cash use already; the NPP launch will only accelerate this 52

Figure 22: The NPP will be an instant hit in Australia as P2P payments are mostly done by bank transfer 55

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