Treasury Management Internation Logo

SWIFT and Accenture Publish Joint Paper on Central Bank Digital Currencies in Cross-Border payments

Published 

SWIFT and Accenture today published a paper on central bank digital currencies (CBDCs) in cross-border payments as part of broader digital asset innovation to help the financial community prepare for the possibility of moving payments in new forms of currency internationally.

More than half the world’s central banks are actively exploring the use of CBDCs, a development that could lead to profound change in the global payments ecosystem. This paper explores the practicalities of such a shift – from the ways in which CBDCs would move across jurisdictions to the integration of CBDCs into the mix of currencies that already exist — and details what is required for CBDCs to be a viable solution in international payments.

Interoperability will be key to their success, and while CBDCs present new challenges and opportunities, the paper concludes that continued exploration of CBDCs are likely to leverage existing payments rails where possible, new solutions will become an extension of current infrastructure, and that SWIFT has a unique role to play in a payments ecosystem that includes CBDCs.

To that end, SWIFT is undertaking a deeper dive into CBDCs through thought leadership and experimentation over the coming months. This includes trials to see how SWIFT’s evolving platform and renewed focus on transaction management services under its new strategy to enable instant, frictionless payments across 4 billion accounts globally – agnostic of standards, technologies and currencies – could interact with the cross-border use of CBDCs. In collaboration with the community, SWIFT intends to explore its role further – both as a carrier of authenticated information about CBDC transactions, as it does today for fiat currencies, and as a carrier of actual CBDC value in whatever form it is issued.

Thomas Zschach, Chief Innovation Officer, SWIFT said: “Making payments infrastructure based on CBDCs efficient and interoperable with the broader economy presents some new challenges, but the majority are the same as those faced by existing payment solutions. As a co-operative that is neutral and currency agnostic, with reach across 11,000 institutions in more than 200 countries, and oversight by central banks globally, SWIFT is well placed to engage closely in the debate and any future evolution of money. We look forward to actively supporting our community on issues related to CBDCs and driving responsible innovation aligned with our strategic vision for instant end-to-end transactions.”

David Treat, a senior managing director at Accenture, who leads its Blockchain and Multi-Party Systems practice globally said: “Central Bank Digital Currency has emerged as an important new tool in the global push to modernise financial infrastructure to meet the needs of our increasingly digital and connected world. As an integral part of the financial services infrastructure, SWIFT plays a critical role in illustrating the possible strategic moves its members may undertake as CBDC begins to transform the financial services landscape. We welcome this partnership and are eager to continue to drive responsible and valuable innovation together.”

Most recent episodes

Realising Treasury’s True Value – A Strategy for Change

Join John Meehan (Froneri) to hear how Froneri utilised a year of no acquisitions and no meetings to implement a total transformation project through implementation of a TMS, unlocking the true value of his corporate...

49:14

Lessons from Innospec on Building a Strong Cash Culture

Without ready access to the key metrics of cash forecasting, Andrew Hawes (Innospec) knew the business could do little more than react to events. But without the collaboration of key stakeholders too, he knew that...

35:08

How to Make Your TMS the Ultimate Investment Tool

The right TMS can be a huge asset to treasury. But these one-stop shops often fall short when it comes to short term investment workflows. In this podcast, Ed Lopez, James Griffin (Calastone), Jeannot Jonas (Carrier...

01:24:00

Best Strategies for Driving Cash Visibility: Advice You Can’t Google

What are the best strategies for facilitating cash visibility, and how can treasurers promote everlasting tech adoption within their departments? Serrala’s Nancy Zhang...

35:23

Innovations in Retail Payments

The fallout from the pandemic has radically accelerated changes in consumer behaviour on a global scale. The payments sector has had to quickly adapt in order to keep up with the emerging demands of both digital consumers and retail corporates, resulting in some...

36:40

The Future of ESG in Treasury

In this podcast, Melissa Moi, Peter Jameson and Venkat ES from Bank of America join TMI’s Eleanor Hill to determine where the ESG journey is heading next. Our expert panel consider how changing regulation, technology solutions and metrics including ESG KPIs...

26:50

HSBC’s Sibos Spotlight: Investing in the Future – from Diversity to Green Deposits

In the final instalment of HSBC’s Sibos Spotlight, Eleanor Hill (TMI) invites Nadine Lagarmitte and Suraj Kalati (HSBC) to consider how corporates’ attitudes to...

25:12

HSBC’s Sibos Spotlight: The ESG Landscape – what every treasurer needs to know

In the third edition of HSBC’s Sibos Spotlight Podcast series, TMI’s Eleanor Hill invites Farnam Bidgoli (HSBC) to provide an in-depth overview of the current ESG...

16:24

The Path to Transformational Global Cash Visibility

Davina Bradley (CEVA Logistics) and Conor Deegan (CashAnalytics) join TMI’s Eleanor Hill to explore how treasurers can transform their cash visibility and forecasting within their business in a matter of weeks using a...

33:16

HSBC’s Sibos Spotlight: Embedding ESG in Trade and Supply Chains

In the second podcast from HSBC’s Sibos Spotlight series, TMI’s Eleanor Hill speaks to Surath Sengupta (HSBC) about embedding ESG into trade and supply chains....

20:58