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Table of contents

What are the implications of the ECB's decision to reschedule the launch of the new RTGS from November 2022 to March 2023?

Swift has worked extensively with its global community to prepare for the start of the ISO 20022 migration for cross-border payments and reporting (CBPR+) and, since August, all required capabilities have been deployed and institutions have been able to exchange ISO 20022 messages on an opt-in basis.

On 20 October 2022, the ECB shared its decision delaying the ISO 20022 migration of the Eurosystem by four months. In light of this announcement, and in line with our earlier scenario planning, Swift has committed to further analyse and validate impacts on the timeline for CBPR+ with a view to maintaining operational and business continuity across the global financial system.

An overwhelming majority of our global community has requested that Swift align the start of the global ISO 20022 migration for CBPR+ with the ECB's updated timetable to ease implementation. In response, we've taken the decision to accommodate this request; we'll begin the ISO 20022/MT coexistence period for all users on 20 March 2023.

At the same time, it's clear from our community feedback that there's strong momentum across the industry to implement and gain value from ISO 20022 rich data. So, the revised start date of 20 March 2023 is definitive. Financial institutions are therefore encouraged to continue preparation for the 20 March start date and consider all potential scenarios in their planning to ensure readiness for the start of ISO 20022 coexistence for CBPR+ from that date.

Institutions that would like to realise the benefits of rich data sooner can continue to exchange ISO 20022 messages on an opt-in basis. Extensive resources to assist Swift customers with their ISO 20022 readiness are available on the 'Ensuring ISO 20022 readiness' support page on mySWIFT.

What are the new milestones leading up to the general availability of CBPR+ on 20 March 2023? 

ISO 20022 for cross-border payments and reporting (CBPR+) will go live for all impacted banks on 20 March 2023, with the coexistence of ISO 20022 MX and legacy MT until November 2025.

To help participants with preparation of CBPR+, Swift has automatically subscribe eligible users to the various FINplus services  
- Pilot Future service since January 2022 
- Pilot Current service since June 2022

In-flow Translation service  is available for testing in the FINplus Pilot future service and in the FINplus Pilot current service.   

FINPlus Live service for CBPR+ will be activated for general availability on 20 March 2023.

Early adopters who want to start exchanging CBPR+ messages on live service have the opportunity to opt-in since August 2022. 

The CBPR+ Standards Release 2022 is available on MyStandards (since January 2022) and will proceed as planned in November 2022 as per the annual release cycle.

Validation and translation libraries are available on the FINplus Pilot Future and FINplus Pilot current service.

Financial institutions using Swift messaging software need to upgrade their messaging interface to be able to complete testing for the In-flow Translation service. Swift is supporting the testing journey with a schedule of services and resources, with regular updates to customers as follows:

On an opt-in basis, participants who desire to exchange CBPR+ messages in the live environment with selected counterparties. Participants can register to this 'early adopters' period as explained in KB article 5025106. 

For more information, please refer to the ISO 20022 Programme Getting Started document and Customer Testing Guidelines.

Can I exchange live ISO 20022 messages sooner than March 2023? 

Yes. Since August 2022, all required capabilities have been deployed and institutions have been able to exchange ISO 20022 messages for CBPR+ on an opt-in basis. Institutions that would like to realise the benefits of ISO 20022’s rich data format for CBPR+ sooner than March 2023 can continue to exchange ISO 20022 messages on an opt-in basis. 

 

How will ISO 20022 implementation impact different players in the industry?

ISO 20022 will impact all financial institutions active in cross-border payments as well as market infrastructures and corporates to bank flows, though only the cross-border payments and reporting messages are subject to the CBPR+ programme adoption timelines. Organisations will have to consider and implement solutions to process and store richer and structured ISO messages that will impact the core payment application, middleware, reconciliation, AML/KYC, archiving, reporting applications, messaging interface and acquisition channels. To extract and realise the true benefits of ISO 20022, it needs to be implemented end-to-end. 

Read more on HVPS+

Read more on CGA implementation

 

What standards management tools are available and where can they be found?

MyStandards is a web-based platform provided by Swift to facilitate the management and implementation of ISO 20022 (and FIN MT) standards and related market practice information. This collaborative platform provides access to the published guidelines (CBPR+ or market infrastructure related guidelines), user testing via the Readiness Portal and access to the Translation Rules, all available in MyStandards.

Read more

Will I be able to use FINplus as well as FIN for payments and cash reporting?

During the three-year coexistence period, financial institutions will be able to send ISO 20022 (MX); FIN (MT) or APIs (JSON) for messages in scope of CBPR+. As receiver, you may continue to receive FIN; ISO 20022; multi-format (MX with embedded translated MT) or APIs. The delivery format will depend if the payment message is processed by the transaction manager and on your preferred delivery format.

For more information, download our Connectivity Guidance.  

Do I need to order FINplus or will it be automatically provisioned?

Customers who have already subscribed to FINplus Pilot future (message validation based on the future Standards release) can test In-flow Translation (receipt of multi-format MX messages) as part of their ISO 20022 testing plans. For all eligible customers to be part of the test service – without the need to subscribe individually – Swift has conducted a centrally administered mass provisioning (on 23 January 2022), based on the following eligibility requirements:   

  • BICs with user category ‘Supe’ (supervised institution) or ‘Nosu’ (non-supervised institution).
  • All eligible BICs at the time of the central mass-provisioning will be included.
  • New BICs or BICs that become eligible after the completion of the central mass-provisioning, in January 2022, will continue to be automatically provisioned to the FINplus pilot future.
  • The central mass-provisioning is not applicable for BICs already registered in the FINplus Pilot future service.

Swift will also conduct a central mass-provisioning for registration to the FINplus live service in Q4 2022.  

Will all the pilot (test) services carry all ISO messages?

The FINplus Pilot current service has been provisioned with the same messages as the ones that are in the FINplus live service. The FINplus Pilot future service was provisioned, in July 2022, with the new messages or new version of existing messaging that will be provisioned in the FINplus live service in November 2022 (except for the CBPR+ messages that have been made available since 27 February 2022 to allow proper testing before the start of the coexistence period on 20 March 2023.
The transaction manager pilot began on 24 September 2022, meaning that all the CBPR+ flows that go into FINplus pilot future now go through the transaction manager.
As CBPR+ messages are available for early adopters in the FINplus live service (since 20 August 2022), CBPR+ messages are also available in FINplus pilot current (from the same date).

Note that, in summary:
- Between August 2022 and March 2023 the FINplus pilot current service and FINplus live service will adhere to the CBPR+ 2.1 version. 
- As from 23 July 2023, the SR 2023 version of the messages will be available in FINplus pilot furture and will be implemented in FINplus live on 19 November 2023. 
The list of messages currently supported in the various services of FINplus is available in the KB article #5024231.

What are the readiness steps for the general availability of CBPR+ (March 2023)?

Adoption of ISO 20022 has technology and operational impacts, with general availability from March 2023. The first key activity is to build internal awareness about the change through the various resources Swift makes available (e-learning, webinars, document centre); initiate impact assessment (technology and business) and engage with your application vendor(s). Next, your project team should move into the implementation phase, supported with solo and community testing, prior to executing your adoption approach with a gradual or big-bang transition to live.

Ensure you upgrade your interface and understand the impact on your operations and compliance. Make sure your interface is upgraded to be able to receive ISO and/or multi-format messages. From March 2023, anyone can expect to have to start processing ISO 20022. This will impact your entire payment chain, from the core banking application, to reconciliation, liquidity management, compliance controls and archival systems. Assess how your FCC controls and applications are coping with the ISO 20022 data structure, including archiving of ISO 20022 and the Swift shared services you use (gpi and compliance products). 

Plan your testing activities using tools already available, including FINplus testing, CPBR+ structure validation on MyStandards, the Translation Portal, CBPR+ full message flows using the Test Sparring Partner, performance, and business continuity testing. The revised timelines offer an opportunity for additional functional and non-functional testing prior March 2023. 

For more information, please refer to Get Ready for ISO 20022 for CBPR+.

 

Do I have to implement ISO 20022 for all flows at once or can I continue to send MTs?

Note that for payment and cash reporting flows, there is a migration period until November 2025. After this coexistence period, the MT messages on FIN will be removed for the MT1xx, 2xx and 9xx for the cross-border payments. This does not apply to the other MTs (3, 4, 5, 6, 7).

What are the differences between FIN and FINplus?

To enable the exchange of ISO 20022 messages over SwiftNet, Swift is deploying a FINplus many-to-many InterAct service supporting ISO 20022 messages, for payments and beyond. It offers a similar number of features as FIN as well as the validation of industry usage guidelines such as CBPR+. Core messaging services developed for the FIN service, including non-repudiation, retrieval, closed user group, delivery monitoring, message validation, RMA, and copy and analytic services, are also provided on FINplus. 

Read more                       

From March 2023, if my counterpart sends me a pacs.008, which format will I receive?

Swift will, by default, deliver multi-format MX via FINplus. Change will be managed through user interface to dynamically select your preferred delivery format, per BIC 8 or BIC 11, with delivery criteria based on currency and/or message types.                     

What testing options are available for CBPR+?

The customer testing journey will vary according to your ISO 20022 readiness, either starting the coexistence period on legacy FIN applications (MT only), being able to send and receive ISO messages natively (MX only) or mixing MT and MX during back-office transition. The following collaborative platform, tools and service environment are available to support self-testing, testing with Swift and with the community:

  • MyStandards Readiness Portal – for testing messages against CBPR+ usage guidelines and identifying syntactical and semantic errors.
  • Translation Portal – for testing the mapping rules between the MT and ISO 20022 formats and ensuring downstream applications can be shielded from format changes, where relevant. 
  • FINplus Pilot future service – is provisioned with the CBPR+ message collection and the In-flow Translation service to validate your end-to-end technical and functional readiness with selected counterparts.
  • Test Sparring Partner provides a fictitious counterparty to test with over the FINplus pilot future service, in sending, receiving and relaying directions.

Read more                                                   

How do I know my counterparties’ readiness for ISO 20022?

A new ISO 20022 Readiness directory allows users to view your counterparties’ readiness for the various ISO 20022 FINplus messages. It indicates if a participant (BIC 11 or level 3 DN) is already sending or receiving ISO 20022 messages including CBPR+ messages. The data is updated on a monthly basis and is available on the SWIFTRef download page.  

How can I integrate ISO 20022 in my core banking system, where I can find the specifications? 

All integration and standards specifications are available in the knowledge centre and MyStandards.

Read more

What is the cost of the FINPlus migration? Are there extra fees?

 The new pricing for ISO 20022 messages has been published in an updated Price List for Messaging and Solutions.

Am I obligated to upgrade my bandwidth or to use leased lines?

There is no obligation to use leased lines for FINplus. However, Swift has been conducting internal performance benchmark exercises throughout 2021. The results have been translated in an estimation of necessary resources for ISO 20022/CBPR+ messages on the FINplus service in the updated FINplus Connectivity Packs documentation.

How will gpi be impacted by the ISO 20022 migration? If my institution is using MT for gpi confirmation and tracking today, when should we implement ISO 20022 for gpi?

The gpi ISO strategy remains unchanged; making it easy to protect gpi value and limit impact for gpi customers; increase benefits to gpi customers by leveraging ISO 20022 data richness to improve existing functionalities; and offer a seamless tracker experience, independent of the format or channel that Swift members use for their payments and exchanges with the Tracker. 
Additionally, the mandatory universal confirmations remain for FINplus. As a Creditor Agent, it's still mandatory to confirm the completion of settlement to the creditor (ACCC) and message rejected (RJCT). As an Intermediary Agent, the message rejected (RJCT) and the message transferred outside of Swift (ACSP) remain mandatory as on FIN. In addition to the existing channels providing Tracker confirmations (FIN MT, API, GUI), there will be a dedicated Tracker confirmation message on FINplus as well (trck.001).

What is the implication of the new central RMA to the ISO 20022 migration? What are the key functional features of the portal?

The main driver of the RMA evolution project is to ensure a transparent adoption of ISO 20022 and allow an institution to choose the technical channel (FIN, FINplus). Freedom to choose the technical channel means that institutions must keep RMA relationships synchronised across these services at all times.
Swift will assist the community to keep authorisations synchronised in the following:
- Day 1 synchronisation – FINplus bootstrap 
- Continued synchronisation with local authorisation consistency check
You can find more information on RMA evolution here.

Read more

When should I start sending rich ISO data? 

The migration to ISO 20022 is taking place at different speeds in different markets.
The US – a huge market involved in many transactions – has recently decided not to make the full move until November 2023 (The Clearing House - TCH) and March 2025 (the Federal Reserve Bank - FED). The eurozone will go live on 20 March 2023.

The PMPG have updated their best practices for ISO 20022 migration stating that, to avoid truncation, institutions should hold off using rich data until November 2023. Swift supports this PMPG guidance.

The start of the coexistence period, in March 2023, is a time for our community to adopt ISO 20022 consciously and carefully, continuing to take on board all the latest guidance and developments across markets. 
 

How do I retrieve missing or truncated data where a previous agent or payment market infrastructure is not able to relay ISO 20022 rich content? 


The CBPR+ working group has developed a common market practice on how to report truncated or missing information in the MT standard sent to an agent.
This guidance helps identify the essential missing data to be sent from the sender of an MT message to its receiver. It also defines the roles and responsibilities for reporting missing or truncated information to the next agent in the payment chain where this next agent will only receive the MT part of the message. The guidance also provides a format to carry the essential missing data and the truncated data. 

Read more

How can authorised parties in a transaction can access rich data?  

To support banks’ implementation of the Data Integrity Market Practice Guidance and enable a consistent approach to access additional rich data that might not be transported in legacy format payments, Swift has developed a “Rich Data Access” feature as an enhancement of its Case Management solution and has made it universally available to all relevant Swift users that may require access to rich ISO 20022 data. 

This feature of the Case Management solution aims to propose a consistent and more efficient alternative to the bilateral Request For Information process outlined in the Market Practice, removing the dependency on the previous intermediary and subsequently increasing the speed of investigation handling.

The tracker/case management solution will be made available in the testing environment by end of October and in the live environment (early adopter) on 20 November 2022.

What kind of action do I need to take in light of the change of migration date?

No specific action is required for banks. However, Swift strongly advises institutions that have yet to complete basic readiness activities to continue with preparations for readiness, well in time for the new March 2023 deadline. 

It's clear from community feedback that there's strong momentum across the industry to implement and gain value from ISO 20022 rich data. Institutions are advised to prepare for the start of cross-border migration independently of any domestic ISO 20022 projects during the same period.

Institutions should consider joining the FINplus CBPR+ opt-in service to start realising the benefits of rich data before 20 March 2023. 

Will there be a shift in the activation date for the FINplus RMA bootstrapped records?

Yes, FINplus relationships bootstrapped in preparation for the CBRP+ migration will have their date aligned to the new go-live date. They will get a start date of 19 March 2023 in preparation of the 20 March. Bootstrapped authorisations with an end date before 19 March will never be activated and will be closed again. The impact of this delay on your migration preparations is fully described in KB article.

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