Thailand’s National ITMX taps ACI for real-time payments growth

Image courtesy of ACI

The National Interbank Transaction Management and Exchange (ITMX) in Thailand has successfully implemented ACI Worldwide’s real-time payments solution to modernise the country’s bulk payments processing system and support continued real-time growth.

ACI High Value and Low Value Real-Time Payments promises to further drive growth with ISO 20022-compliant bulk processing, enhancing the existing real-time payments infrastructure and enabling new use cases such as B2B payments. 

ISO 20022 is seen as a key enabler for the development of future payment services, as well as facilitating cross-border linkages between Southeast Asia’s domestic payment networks.

Co-owned by Thailand’s largest commercial banks and governed by the Central Bank of Thailand (BOT), National ITMX is responsible for developing and delivering Thailand’s digital payments infrastructure, including card-based, non-card-based and account-to-account payments. 

ACI’s real-time payments solution has been successfully implemented across all 33 ITMX member banks, bridging ISO 20022 and the existing ISO 8583 standard.

“Thailand has experienced phenomenal year-on-year real-time payments growth of 145% since 2016, with consumers embracing the first wave of payments modernisation,” said Wanna Noparbhorn, managing director, National ITMX. 

“The next stage of growth, utilising the PromptPay real-time payments network and ISO 20022 standards, will come from the merchant retail and business-to-business sector,” she said.

National ITMX’s bulk payments system processed more than 96 million transactions and 4.3 trillion baht (about US$143 billion) in 2020, representing annual growth of 60% in transaction volume and 8% in total value. 

ITMX’s critical payments infrastructure is used for corporate payments including payroll, dividends, interest, loans, securities, government bonds, tax refunds, goods and services. Also relying on it are government welfare programs such as the senior citizen welfare fund, farmer’s subsidies and the COVID-19 relief fund.

“Thailand and the rest of Southeast Asia seek to bounce back quickly from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Leslie Choo, ACI Worldwide SVP for Asia. “Real-time bulk payments can assist with government disbursements and emergency support measures, as well as help businesses to efficiently manage salary payments and liquidity.”