ECB to set back T2S timetable to beyond 2013

ECB to set back T2S timetable to beyond 2013

The European Central Bank has been forced to set back the deadline for the introduction of a new pan-European securities settlement system by up to a year as negotiations over pricing and governance drag on, according to a report in the Financial Times.

The Target2 Securities (T2S) system was conceived by the ECB as a mechanism for cutting cross-border trading costs through the creation of a streamlined pan-European platform for securities settlement against central bank money.

Citing "people familiar with the matter", the FT says that an ECB "advisory group" on T2S is set to meet in Amsterdam on Friday to discuss timetabling and the prospect of project over-run.

The delays will come as no surprise to anybody who sat in on a heated T2S debate conducted at last year's Sibos in Hong Kong which descended into an angry spat between agent banks, securities depositories and the central bank over costs, timetabling and information transparency.

In outlining the ECB's progress, Jean-Michel Godeffroy, chairman of the T2S programme board admitted that there had been a seven-month delay to the completion of General Functional Specifications document, which outlines the technical requirements for the T2S system and that other challenges, over pricing and governance had yet to be addressed.

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