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The Rapid Payment Programme and Other Payments Developments in SA

Last year we reported that the Rapid Payment Programme (RPP) would be launched in May 2022 by PASA. Unfortunately, there have been some unforeseen delays to solve, such as standardisation and the last mile functions between the payment operators, and therefore deployment is now expected in early 2023. However, there are now eleven banks involved and plans are afoot to recruit vendors. Another outstanding issue, EFSA has learned, is how best to enable online RPP and the necessary standardisation.

Work continues the creation of a Payments Industry Body (PIB). The Design Board has worked hard to create a balanced, inclusive body as required by SARB. Over the last 3 weeks, the stakeholders (including EFSA) have given their input into various aspects of the PIB, including mandate, membership, and funding. There will be 5 levels of membership from the acquiring banks through to Other Interested or Impacted Parties (OIIPs). EFSA will be an OIIP, this will allow us to be informed and consulted. For some special projects, the OIIPs would also be invited to vote. Some of our members are Payment Service Providers (like PayU, Ozow, or Peach Payments, for example). PSPS are entities that are licensed to operate by SARB. There are about three hundred of these, but they will not be able to vote. Some discussion is surrounding this issue. The Design Board plans to complete its work and submit its proposals to SARB in May. It will then be up to SARB to agree or demand changes. The structure is expected to be included in one way or another in the Conduct of Financial Institutions (COFI) Bill, presently before Parliament.


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