Central Bank of Russia Plans to Move the Analog of SWIFT to Blockchain

Published on 07 May. 2018
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The Central Bank of Russia plans to use blockchain for its system of financial messages transferring (SPFS) in 2019. The information is reported by the media resource “Izvestiia.”

The experts believe that due to the blockchain technology one can increase the security level of the financial messages and provide the transparency of transactions. Such innovation, think specialists, will become an analog of the SWIFT system and increase the interest of banks and companies.

The aim with which the system of financial messages transferring turns to blockchain is the highest possible protection of the financial transactions. The data from the distributed ledger are impossible to delete, and the information is automatically updated within all the system members with every new record.

The resource reports that the bankers confirmed the desire of the regulator to move the financial operations to the blockchain. It is unknown at the moment what kind of blockchain – personal, public, or private Ethereum blockchain – will be used.

According to the Teletrade analyst Piotr Pushkarev, if the blockchain is implemented into SPFS, this will make the system even more reliable than SWIFT.

Tamara Kasianova, a partner in the auditing company “2K,” believes that blockchain will allow improving the security and the transparency. She also mentioned that the SWIFT analog would attract more members as soon as the blockchain is implemented into the system.

Other industry experts are positive about the blockchain implementation as well. They mention that the technology, among other things, will help to reduce the risk of the hacker attacks.

SPFS service is already working as a reserve channel for transferring financial messages, transactions, and as an alternative to SWIFT, when it’s economically profitable. For example, today, the price of the message is around 1.5-2 RUB ($0.02), and the SWIFT transferring rate can fluctuate from $0.04-0.06 per message. The only drawback is the client database since about 9 thousand banks from 209 countries are connected to SWIFT.

Russians started to actively develop the project in 2014, when there was a possibility of sanctions from the European Parliament, due to which the Russian banks could be disconnected from the SWIFT system.  The fears were idle, but the SPFS system is functioning and can become a real alternative to SWIFT.

Today, the blockchain technology is of high priority in Russia. Recently, the information has been revealed that the countries of the Eurasian Union are working out the common rules for the single financial space.


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