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ISO 20022 standard: Objectives and fields of application

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ISO 20022 is an international standard for financial messaging and data interchange. It defines a common platform for the development of messages for financial services and aims to provide a consistent and globally accepted format for exchanging information between financial institutions and other stakeholders. Here's some detailed information about ISO 20022:

  1. Creation and development: ISO 20022 was created and is maintained by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO). ISO is an independent, non-governmental organization that brings together experts from various industries to develop and publish international standards to facilitate global cooperation and interoperability. The ISO 20022 standard was first introduced in 2004, and since then, it has undergone several updates and revisions to stay relevant and up-to-date with evolving financial industry needs.
  2. Roles and Objectives: The ISO 20022 standard has several key roles and objectives: a. Standardization: It provides a single, standardized message structure for financial transactions across different systems and institutions. b. Interoperability: ISO 20022 promotes seamless communication and interoperability between various financial systems and organizations, reducing integration costs and efforts. c. Enriched Data: It allows for richer and more structured data in financial messages, enabling better data analytics and reporting capabilities. d. Flexibility: The standard is flexible and extensible, accommodating a wide range of financial products and services, including payments, securities, trade finance, and more.
  3. Main Goal: The main goal of ISO 20022 is to replace the existing proprietary and legacy messaging formats with a unified and globally recognized standard, streamlining communication between financial institutions and other stakeholders. By doing so, it enhances the efficiency, reliability, and security of financial transactions.
  4. Adoption around the world: ISO 20022 is already being implemented in various countries across different continents. Some of the countries where ISO 20022 is already executed or under implementation include:
    • European Union: The Single Euro Payments Area (SEPA) uses ISO 20022 for euro-denominated payments.
    • United States: The Federal Reserve has adopted ISO 20022 for its high-value payments system, Fedwire.
    • Switzerland: SWIFT (Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication) has implemented ISO 20022 for its cross-border payment messages.
    • Singapore: The country has adopted ISO 20022 for its real-time gross settlement system, FAST (Fast and Secure Transfers).
    • Australia: ISO 20022 is used for various payment systems and regulatory reporting.
  5. Benefits with international crypto payments: ISO 20022 can bring several benefits to international crypto payments. By standardizing the messaging format, it can improve the efficiency and accuracy of cross-border crypto transactions. This can lead to faster processing times, reduced error rates, and enhanced transparency in payment information.

Additionally, ISO 20022's ability to handle enriched data can enable the inclusion of more information in payment messages, such as additional details about the transaction purpose or regulatory compliance requirements. This can be particularly useful in crypto payments, where proper identification of parties and transaction details is crucial to meet anti-money laundering (AML) and know-your-customer (KYC) regulations.

Overall, ISO 20022 plays a vital role in facilitating interoperability and harmonization in the financial industry, including the realm of international crypto payments.