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Ready for launch: WSBI international remittances platform

Ready for launch: WSBI international remittances platform

​​​​​​​​​Webinar for members, interested banks set for 20 August

>> Learn more about the webinar 

>> Register for the webinar

BRUSSELS, 6 August 2020 – WSBI members and interested financial institutions have been invited to join WSBI on 20 August for a webinar on implementation of its international remittances project. The 45-minute webinar will provide an overview of project status and highlight advantages of participating in it. 

Starting at 10 am Brussels time that day, WSBI-ESBG Head of Innovation Diederik Bruggink will provide an overview of the remittances project concept – now ready for launch – ​and advantages compared to other global remittances providers. Technical aspects of the remittances project, especially how remittances are processed and settled, will be presented by UPT Executive Vice President Bülent Şaştı. 

Diederik Bruggink

Head of Innovation & Payments, WSBI-ESBG

Diederik Bruggink is head of innovation and payments at ESBG and WSBI. He holds responsibility at the two savings and retail banking associations for all payments topics from a worldwide perspective. In that role, he analyses the multiple dimensions of the payments market, proposing and assisting in agreeing member positions with respect to their payments’ and related businesses. He also advocates the associations’ positions on payments with policymakers, regulators, standardisation bodies, industry associations, and enabling a constant member dialogue on developments, with a particular focus on innovation.

Bülent Şaştı

Executive Vice President, UPT

Bülent Şaştı has been working as Executive Vice President responsible for Domestic and International Business Development at UPT since 2018. Prior to this position, he has worked at ING Bank Turkey for 20 years, where he was Manager of International Payments and Cash Management Department for 11 years and Senior Internal Auditor for 9 years. He graduated from the University of Istanbul Faculty of Economics and since that time he has worked in the finance sector. He has deep knowledge of domestic and international payment systems and has worked in many domestic and international projects like virtual cash management, SWIFT GPI, SWIFTNet, E-invoicing. He is currently leading digital transformation and innovative product development projects at UPT.​

WSBI and remittances:  The journey to lower costs for banks, people

WSBI launched its remittances platform in late 2018 in partnership with UPT, Universal Payment Transfer, a subsidiary of Aktif Bank – the biggest privately owned investment bank in Turkey. The platform aims to deliver fair pricing and real-time international remittances to end-users. 

​WSBI has been actively involved in the global policy debate on setting a "fair value" framework for international remittances. The association's work on fair remittances practices dates back to 2003 when it crafted a “Fair Value Remittances" value proposition that promotes end-to-end transparency and accountability in migrating from cash to account-based remittances. It served as input to the 2007 BIS / World Bank International Guiding Principles.

The outgrowth of that work was the WSBI Fair Value Remittance Framework, which ​responded to the needs from WSBI member banks and non-member financial institutions seeking to set standardised contractual terms and conditions governing their bilateral relationships. These financial institutions aimed at raising overall market efficiency, notably through greater choice and service quality for customers. These banks also look to offer customers a more ethical value proposition while boosting overall economic impact. By doing this, they put in practice the World Bank/BIS General Principles for International Remittance Services and work towards reaching the relevant United Nations' Sustainable Development Goal number 10 that specifies that by 2030, the transaction costs of migrant remittances should be reduced to less than 3 per cent and remittance corridors with costs higher than five per cent should be eliminated.​

Staying resilient in times of Covid-19

As Covid-19 drives remittances flows to their sharpest decline in recent history, WSBI joined 36 other organisations across the globe to form the Remittance Community Task Force (RCTF), a group initiated by a UN specialised agency released in June guidelines for a coordinated response towards recovery of remittances families due to Covid-19. 

Titled Remittances in Crisis: Response, Resilience, Recovery: Blueprint for action, the report from the task force, which was formed by Rome-based International Fund for Agriculture Development (IFAD), contains concrete and actionable recommendations to help spur the recovery and the resilience of one billion people: 200 million migrant workers – half of them women – and their 800 million family members who rely on remittances. 

The report presents the reality faced by remittance senders in host countries and their families in lower-middle-income countries (LMIC). It identifies the crisis’ impact on continuity of remittance flows, from the lens of service providers and includes policy and regulatory issues that need to be tackled to improve the resilience of remittance markets in the face of current and upcoming shocks. The report closes with a preliminary set of 20 immediate and short-term “Measures for Action” directed to member states, private sector and civil society to consider in their response towards maintaining the flow of fast, cheap and safe remittances during the post-Covid​-19 crisis.”   >> Read the report​      

Remittances; Covid-19