Over 500 people registered to attend our two Techweek webinars – ‘Deep dive into the world of open banking standards’ and ‘Next-generation real-time systems – an architecture perspective’. Our speakers were local and international industry experts across banking, financial services, and payments technology, and they offered thought-provoking insights into these areas. We also provided an overview on the work Payments NZ and the API Centre are leading in open banking and next-generation real-time payments systems.
Both open banking and real-time payments are important building blocks of Aotearoa New Zealand’s payments ecosystem of the future, as set out in our Payments Modernisation Plan. Collectively, those building blocks form the foundation of a world-class payments system for Aotearoa that meets the evolving needs of consumers and serves future generations.
‘Deep dive into the world of open banking standards’
The API Centre team facilitated a panel discussion focused on the more technical aspects of open banking in Aotearoa.
The session opened with Phil Cass, API Centre Manager, talking about what defines open banking.
“It’s an ecosystem that allows third-party financial service providers to access banking data and offer alternative payments options, with a customer’s consent, through the use of APIs. This allows greater competition, innovation, choice, and financial services. Open banking offers faster, more accurate risk analysis when assessing finance and lending.”
Phil said the use of standardised APIs makes sense because they are governable, secure, customer consent-driven, and scalable.
Panellists Tina Groark (Open Banking Specialist, Glueware), Vinesh Hansjee (Head of Enterprise Architecture, Worldline NZ), Carl Samuelson (Technical Consultant, ASB), and Zhuo Wang (API Designer, BNZ), facilitated by API Centre Lead Architect Nigel Somerfield, then discussed current trends in open banking and API standards and implementation, and what they learned from their experience being on the API Centre’s Technical working group.
The panellists spoke about how industry feedback on the standards was seen as integral to the development loop. Collaboration, said Phil, lies at the heart of the open banking ecosystem. As one panellist noted, the value of an industry-led approach means contributors in the ecosystem can have some influence on standards versions and time frames.
The shared sentiment was that open banking is a phenomenon that is taking over the world and will only keep growing.
Next-generation real-time systems – an architecture perspective
Our second webinar on next-generation real-time systems was opened by Payments NZ’s Head of Strategy Chad Haighmark, and was followed by a presentation by Ryan McQueen, MD Payments and Data, and Rob Langley, Payments Architecture lead, from global management consultancy Accenture. The presentation focused on an architectural view of next-generation real-time payments systems and their enabling capabilities, the latest design of these systems around the world, and the exciting future capabilities and opportunities this presents as technology evolves.
Chad spoke about the continual evolution of the payments ecosystem, and how a next-generation system offers efficiency, innovation, and connectivity, and a broad range of opportunities to support Aotearoa’s payments needs of the future.
Ryan and Rob then talked about how real-time payments platforms have evolved over the past two decades, from the early first generation to the current developments in the fourth generation. With over 60 countries having introduced real-time payment systems in that time, we are uniquely placed to leverage learnings and consider a best-in-class platform for Aotearoa.
While first generation real-time implementations focused almost exclusively on real-time value transfer, the new fourth generation platforms of today offer extended integrations to drive enhanced and value-added experiences.
These new modular by design platforms have the ability for functionality to be layered up and recombined to deliver a range of services. They better support integration and provide the potential for new offerings such as integration with digital ledgers, commerce for IoT devices, connectivity across national payments platforms and pan-Pacific remittance.
These future functionalities, and much more, are the things that Payments NZ are working to consider with the industry as we think through what a real-time system could look like for Aotearoa. We invite attendees to think about what future functionalities they might use from a next-generation system, and to register to hear about this work as it progresses.
We thank the speakers for their time and expertise. We also thank all those who attended the webinars and look forward to seeing everyone at our future events.