Swift breathes sigh of relief over SARS; joins FIX Protocol Limited

Swift breathes sigh of relief over SARS; joins FIX Protocol Limited

Interbank payments network Swift says it is increasingly confident that the annual Sibos operations seminar will proceed as planned following the World Health Organisation's (WHO) decision to remove Singapore from its list of SARS-affected countries.

Sibos is scheduled to take place in Singapore from 20-24 October 2003. According to WHO guidelines, countries are removed from the list following 20 consecutive days (the duration of two incubation periods) post detection of the last case.

Attendance drop-offs forced Swift into a last-minute cancellation of Sibos 2001 in Singapore following the 9/11 terror attacks. The organisation has been careful not inflict a repeat performance on the Sibos community, setting 27 June 2003 as a final checkpoint for commitment to proceed with this year's show.

Swift says that the response to Sibos 2003 has been positive with 85% of exhibition space already sold and a strong line up of speakers secured. Sixty-nine speakers have confirmed their participation including nine CEOs and a number of leading industry representatives. Brett Goodin, president of Fidelity Investment Management Asia/Pacific, Tharman Shanmugaratnam, Singapore's Senior Minister of State, Trade and Industry and Vincent Cheng, CEO of Hang Seng Bank and group general manager of HSBC will be among those addressing delegates at the event.

Seperately, Swift has announced that it has taken up membership of FIX Protocol Limited, and is now attending key FIX working committees, including technical, business practices and marketing/education. FPL, the industry body that develops the front office messaging standard for securities transactions, opened up membership to the vendor community late last year.

London consultancy City IQ recently identified Swift, and the next-generation IP-based SwiftNet network, as a key beneficiary of the uptake of FIX among European institutions. The SwiftNet FIX service provides firms with access to multiple trading partners through a single FIX connection, eliminating the need to maintain multiple network and application-level connections.

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