ACI Worldwide, a leading global provider of real-time digital payment software and solutions, has announced that Thailand’s National Interbank Transaction Management and Exchange (ITMX) has successfully implemented ACI’s real-time payments solution to modernize Thailand’s bulk payments processing system and support continued real-time growth.
ACI High Value and Low Value Real-Time Payments promises to further drive growth with ISO 20022-compliant bulk processing, enhancing the existing real-time payments infrastructure and enabling new use cases such as B2B payments. ISO 20022 is seen as a key enabler for the development of future payment services, as well as facilitating cross-border linkages between Southeast Asia’s domestic payment networks.
National ITMX, which is co-owned by Thailand’s largest commercial banks and governed by the Central Bank of Thailand (BOT), is responsible for developing and delivering Thailand’s digital payments infrastructure, including card-based, non-card-based and account-to-account payments. ACI’s real-time payments solution has been successfully implemented across all 33 ITMX member banks, bridging ISO 20022 and the existing ISO 8583 standard.
“Thailand has experienced phenomenal year-on-year real-time payments growth of 145 percent since 2016, with consumers embracing the first wave of payments modernization. The next stage of growth, utilizing the PromptPay real-time payments network and ISO 20022 standards, will come from the merchant retail and business-to-business sectors,” said Wanna Noparbhorn, managing director, National ITMX. “ACI implemented our new bulk payments processing system in a tight timeframe to support high throughput and growing volumes, delivering the stability, accuracy and consistency needed to successfully integrate all 33 member banks with the mission-critical processing speeds required.”
National ITMX’s bulk payments system processed more than 96 million transactions and 4.3 trillion baht (USD $143 billion) in 2020, representing annual growth of 60 percent in transaction volume and 8 percent in total value. Its critical payments infrastructure is utilized for corporate payments including payroll, dividends, interest, loans, securities, government bonds, tax refunds, goods and services. It is also relied upon by government welfare programs such as the senior citizen welfare fund, farmer’s subsidies and the COVID-19 relief fund.
“ITMX has demonstrated that a rapid shift from paper-based to digital payments is possible through harnessing the possibilities of real time for all ecosystem participants, a model that other countries may look to emulate,” said Leslie Choo, senior vice president – Asia, ACI Worldwide. “Thailand and the rest of Southeast Asia seek to bounce back quickly from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. Real-time bulk payments can assist with government disbursements and emergency support measures, as well as help businesses to efficiently manage salary payments and liquidity. However, for this to be successful, processors and banks need to be backed by scalable and high-performing solutions.”
The proportion of real-time, digital payments in Thailand is expected to rise from 13.3 percent in 2020 to 30.1 percent by 2025, primarily taking share from paper-based payments that currently account for 60.1 percent of all transactions. Real-time payments’ share of non-paper-based digital transactions is anticipated to rise from three in 10 to more than four in 10 over the next five years, spurred by high mobile wallet usage (84 percent of adults in the past year).