BANKING TECHNOLOGY | Roxanne Uy, Singapore

Banks urged to improve payment processing systems as NFC arises

“The key opportunity for banks is to use the point of sale collection technology to provide richer information to their clients,” HSBC’s John Laurens said.

ABF: While the near field communication technology allows peer to peer payments, how is your bank working on the back bone to support it?

HSBC: John Laurens, Head of Global Payments and Cash Management, Asia Pacific
NFC is transforming how individuals initiate settlement, this is impacting collection models for retail and consumer corporates. Although the technology is in its infancy, there is little doubt that the application of technology in this area will help corporates manage both inventory and receivables more effectively.

The key opportunity for banks is to use the point of sale collection technology to provide richer information to their clients thereby facilitating sales reporting and receivables reconciliation.

The processing of these transactions will run over existing infrastructures so banks will need to fine tune their existing payment processing infrastructures to cater for the increased volumes that easy-to-use NFC services are likely to generate.

HSBC has a standardised payments infrastructure and has built interfaces into all its major clearing systems across the region which, coupled with our industry leadership in the development and delivery of ‘open standards’, means that we are well placed to support the evolution of this trend.

Aggregators, or market infrastructure providers, are expected to play a greater role in servicing NFC-created volumes, although the growth in these channels will be tempered by the increased market focus on counterparty risk in an increasingly stringent regulatory environment.

CIMB: Iswaraan Suppiah, Head of Group Information and Operations Division
CIMB Group holds a stake in Touch ‘n Go Sdn Bhd, a Malaysian company that offers near field communication (NFC)-based stored value card to consumers, currently focused primarily on transportation. Touch ‘n Go cards can currently be topped up at special purpose vending machines located in transport hubs and stations, automated teller machines (ATMs) of CIMB as well as other participating Malaysian banks. From predominantly being used to pay public transport fares, the infrastructure for Touch ’n Go has been extended to parking, road toll and usage at selected retail chain outlets.  

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