It's all very well that there is missing or incorrect reference data such as IBAN and BIC, but some things seem so simple to address, and yet they somehow fall by the wayside...
It is a given that one of the biggest obstacles to STP of inbound cross-border payment messages, at least for those of fairly large reportable amounts, is central bank reporting (CBR) data. None of the banks use the same codes, so it is a nightmare for
the beneficiary's bank to work out how to automatically map every one of the 31 SEPA countries codes to the local ones.
Well before the launch of Credit in January, a number of key figures were already banging on about the CBR issue. As early as September 2007, SWIFT's Standardised Corporate Environment (SCORE) identified that the standard's field is not even long enough
for all the required reporting codes...
There is a school of thought that calls for CBR to be completely abolished, but one should recognise that it still has an important part to play in the regulatory environment.
If SEPA is of such importance to the EPC, and (supposedly) for the welfare of Europe, why can't the political will be found to harmonise the CBR codes? Surely the necessity to manually process CBR mapping is an obstacle to the reduction in costs that SEPA
strives so hard to achieve.