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SWIFT creates blockchain application to simplify cross-border payments

Thursday 12 January 2017 | 09:17 AM CET

The Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication (SWIFT) has begun building a blockchain application to simplify cross-border payments.

The global platform is integrating open-source blockchain technology with its own products to build a proof-of-concept that might one day replace the so-called "nostro" accounts its members keep filled with cash all over the world – just in case they need it.

A successful test of distributed ledger technology (DLT) could enable banks to optimize their liquidity globally and SWIFT to reduce the costs of reconciliation between independent databases maintained by the inter-bank platform's members, reduce operational costs and free up liquidity for other investments.

Currently, SWIFT’s network of 11,000 financial institutions monitor their accounts around the world using the platform's existing debit and credit updates via end-of-day statements.

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