10 Second International Money Transfer Time Is Now A Reality With Sepa.


Transfer your funds with the SEPA Instant Credit Transfer scheme

Instant Euro credit transfers in the Single Euro Payments Area (SEPA) are available from 21 November.

Instant Euro credit transfers in the Single Euro Payments Area (SEPA) are now possible. The SEPA Instant Credit Transfer (SCT Inst) will transfer funds up to (for the time being) 15,000 Euro within ten seconds every day of the week all year round. The European Payments Council that oversees the launch of the scheme foresees that more payment service providers (PSPs) will join the scheme in the near future. Initially the scheme has been rolled out in eight countries: Austria, Estonia, Germany, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, the Netherlands and Spain, but has the potential to cover the entire area of all 34 SEPA countries and territories. More countries, among which are Belgium, Finland, Germany, Malta, Portugal and Sweden will soon join the scheme in the course of 2018.

This is a truly pan-european instant credit transfer scheme

The scheme allows to make SCT Inst payments not only within each single country’s border but also cross-border between these countries as well, as long as both sender and beneficiary utilise PSPs that participate in the scheme and the transaction is denominated in Euro, even if their accounts are not. Several countries had already launched their own version of instant payment scheme, but these schemes would have stopped at their national borders hindering the process of payment integration in the SEPA area.

Operators had just one year to set their IT systems, their risk management processes, their clearing and settlement arrangements and get ready to roll out this new service to their customers. Each operator has the faculty to promote this service within their own brand and it could even be that the ‘SCT Inst’ will remain more of a kind of code name among the payment community, generally unfamiliar to the wider public. The flexibility of the scheme does not end there. As long as the operators follow the rules outlined in the SCT Inst scheme, they are allowed to offer additional features. For instance, they can agree bilaterally or multilaterally to increase the transfer limit and speed of transactions. However, the EPC will review the maximum transaction amount at least once a year. First review of the amount is due in November 2018 with the outlook to be increased if this is in line with the needs of the payment community becoming effective three months after the decision is made public.

When and why the SCT Inst is useful

It is easy to recognise the usefulness of the scheme in all circumstances where the immediate availability of funds is needed. First to come to mind is when emergency funds are required, for instance, when a relative abroad is facing an unforeseen situation. The public also has shown to be ready for paying for goods or services that already require on-the-spot payments, with clear benefits too for the businesses involved in the transactions. The scheme will develop further also in the context of person-to-person payments. P2P mobile payments makes the SCT Inst scheme a channel particularly suited for instant payments.

International money transfer will be fast, secure and consequently irrevocable within the SEPA area and, as long as you have secured funds in Euro, SCT Inst can be used for all those transaction that are better to be executed with a on-the-spot payment. Contacting a currency specialist or broker well in advance to reduce cost and save money is a better option if your money transfer transaction originates with a non-Euro denomination.


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