Vientiane, Lao PDR, November 3, 2016—IFC,
a member of the World Bank Group, is helping commercial banks in Lao PDR
and Mekong countries to streamline transactions through an improved payment
system. The country’s payments, remittances and securities settlement
system (“PRSSS”) will deliver safer, more efficient, cheaper and innovative
payment methods to customers, especially benefitting small and medium sized
enterprises in rural areas. The updated system will contribute to overall
financial stability and allow for widespread access to non-cash payments.
On November 3 and 4, Bank of the Lao
PDR and IFC are hosting a conference for banks in the Mekong region to
adopt ISO 20022, a new ISO standard that promises to unify financial entities
with a common language.
“The adoption of the new ISO 20022
standard is quite important for the modernization of the financial sector
in the region as it allows an increased level of efficiency for the communication
and exchange of financial transactions,” said Vattana Dalaloy, Deputy
Governor of Bank of the Lao PDR. “The Bank of the Lao PDR is undertaking
a holistic development of the national payment system and will continue
working in this area to modernize the sector and increase the level of
financial stability and inclusion.”
During the workshop attendees will discuss
the features of the ISO 20022 standard and share industry feedback within
a global context. Among the 100-plus expected participants are representatives
from the Bundesbank, the Reserve Bank of India, SWIFT, the central banks
of Vietnam, Cambodia and Myanmar and local operators.
“This is the first time we are offering
the region’s central banks and commercial entities with a list of concrete
step-by-step guidelines for implementing new standards complying with ASEAN,”
said Phongsavanh Phomkong, Head of IFC Office in Vientiane.
In partnership with the Switzerland’s
State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO), the workshop is delivered
by the World Bank Group Finance and Markets Global Practice, which aims
to help countries build deep, diversified, inclusive, efficient and stable
financial systems essential to promoting economic growth and reducing poverty
and increasing shared prosperity.
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group,
is the largest global development institution focused on the private sector
in emerging markets. Working with 2,000 businesses worldwide, we use our
six decades of experience to create opportunity where it’s needed most.
In FY16, our long-term investments in developing countries rose to nearly
$19 billion, leveraging our capital, expertise and influence to help the
private sector end extreme poverty and boost shared prosperity. For more
information, visit www.ifc.org