Payments UK launches Sepa directory and open API

Payments UK launches Sepa directory and open API

Trade association Payments UK has launched a directory designed to make it simpler for anyone making cross-border payments into Britain to check routing data.

From today, a new rule means that Eurozone banks and Payment Service Providers (PSPs) can process Sepa payments using only a customer's Iban, meaning that they no longer need the Business Identifier Code (BIC) of the PSP they are intending to pay.

Although the rule does not apply to the UK until October, Payments UK has worked with Swift to build a Sepa Iban-only directory that provides PSPs with a way of deriving the BIC from the Iban, ensuring Eurozone firms have the information they need to route Sepa payments to British beneficiaries.

The directory can either be downloaded, integrated for access via an API into the end user’s back office systems, or accessed through the individual lookup facility, which is free to use from swift.com.

Maurice Cleaves, chief executive, Payments UK, says: "Payments UK has worked across the industry, with a wide range of stakeholders, both nationally and in Europe, to build a clever tool to support the introduction of this new regulatory change that comes into effect today.

"Our directory, which includes data for over 95% of UK Sepa reachable BICs, goes truly above and beyond, boasting a technologically superior offering. By incorporating open API criteria into the software, we are demonstrating the emphasis we place on making payments efficient - streamlining and simplifying processes for the end user - and harnessing the latest technology to help us in that regard."

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