SWIFT gpi to promote ASEAN financial integration and enhance cross-border economic ties for the region

KUALA LUMPUR, MalaysiaSept. 21, 2018 — SWIFT has announced that it will work with five Malaysian banks to bring its global payments innovation (gpi) initiative to Malaysia in coming months.

SWIFT partners with Malaysian banks to bring its cross-border payments service, SWIFT gpi to the country
SWIFT partners with Malaysian banks to bring its cross-border payments service, SWIFT gpi to the country


The banks are Maybank, Hong Leong Bank, CIMB Bank Berhad, Bank Islam, and Bank Rakyat, which will implement the gpi service in the months to come. They join over 230 banks worldwide that have already committed to SWIFT gpi.

SWIFT gpi offers a first in the industry – the secure delivery of high-speed cross-border payments that are tracked from start to finish. When live, the service will allow payments to be delivered in a fraction of the time it currently takes for them to reach the end beneficiary. SWIFT gpi-enabled banks and their customers will be able to track each payment from start to finish in real-time with a cloud-based tracker, and gain full transparency on transaction and FX fees. This leads to cost efficiencies, increased treasury management control and shorter supply cycles for corporate customers.

“We are delighted to welcome five of Malaysia’s leading banks to SWIFT gpi. The initiative will dramatically improve the customer experience in cross-border payments by increasing their speed, transparency and end-to-end tracking, bringing valuable benefits to Malaysian users and paving the way for economic competitiveness in the market,” says Mr. Bernard Woodruff, Country Director for Malaysia, SWIFT.

Trade figures for Malaysia have been on the rise, registering RM935.39 billion in 2017, an increase of 19.4% year on year[1]. ASEAN markets and mainland China have ranked consistently as Malaysia’slargest trade partners for both import and export[2]. Twenty banks are currently live on SWIFT gpi in ASEAN and mainland China, while 65 others are in the process of going live. The availability of SWIFT’s cross-border payments service in Malaysia opens up additional trade opportunities for the country in Asia and beyond.

Malaysia is the latest ASEAN market to roll out the initiative, which has already seen success in other parts of the region. The presence of a high-speed cross-border service will afford customers in Malaysiastandardised connectivity with multiple markets in the region, further facilitating integration and fostering economic growth across ASEAN,” continues Mr. Woodruff.

As part of its ongoing efforts towards regional integration, SWIFT is also working with a group of gpi banks from AustraliaChinaSingapore and Thailand to test its new instant cross-border SWIFT gpi payments service in Asia Pacific. Once live, the service will introduce significant benefits that extend beyond gpi banks and their customers — in time allowing for a complete real-time cross-border payments experience for all bank customers in the region, improving customer experience and allowing for faster P2P remittances and SME trade settlement.

SWIFT gpi has seen rapid adoption with more than 100 billion USD in SWIFT gpi messages sent every day. Half of SWIFT gpi payments are credited to end beneficiaries in less than 30 minutes and over 90% of gpi payments are credited within 24 hours. Over 30% of all SWIFT cross-border payments are now sent on gpi, and more than 230 banks, including 49 of the world’s top 50 banks, have already signed up to the gpi service. By end 2020, the SWIFT Community will have universally adopted the gpi service, a move that will see all 10,000 banks on SWIFT’s global network use the global payments innovation service for cross border payments.

[1] MITI Report 2017, Ministry of International Trade and Industry Malaysia

[2] China was Malaysia’s largest trade partner in 2017, followed by Singapore. Thailand and Indonesia rank fifth and seventh, respectively – 2018 Budget Speech, Ministry of Finance Malaysia

Editor’s Notes:

Quotes from banks for press use:

Mr. Jerome Hon, Group Chief Operations Officer, Maybank:
“We see this as a step in the right direction as it complements our ambition to significantly improve customer experience by increasing speed and transparency for cross-border payments. As the world constantly changes and moves at a more rapid pace, banks across the region seek ways to meet customers’ rising expectation. This is another significant milestone in Maybank’s Payment services.”

Mr. Domenic Fuda, Group Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Hong Leong Bank:
“The SWIFT gpi is an example of how Hong Leong Bank uses technology in pursuing its digital ambitions while driving a reimagined banking experience for customers. We are proud to be one of the first Malaysian banks capable of providing not only faster and seamless cross-border transfers but also a convenient and transparent way for customers to track their global transactions. With this development, customers will benefit from increased control over their Outward Telegraphic Transfers (OTT), and by analyzing transactional banking data that the system generates, we are now better equipped to anticipate and meet our customers’ evolving needs.”

Mr. Hendra Lembong, Chief Executive Officer, Group Transaction Banking, CIMB Group:
“As a leading ASEAN universal bank, CIMB is continuously leveraging on smart partnerships and innovation to provide the best financial solutions to our customers. We are delighted to be among the first few banks in Malaysia to partner with SWIFT on their new global payments initiative, which fits into CIMB’s digital strategy to improve customer experience, through faster cross-border fund transfers, enhanced transparency and greater convenience.”

Mr. Mohd Muazzam Mohamed, Acting CEO of Bank Islam Malaysia Berhad:
“With this implementation, we are able to offer an end-to-end solution that further enhances our customers’ experience which allows their businesses to function efficiently through this digital innovation.”

Dato’ Asmuni Sudin, Chief Operating Officer (Banking Operations) of Bank Rakyat:
“Bank Rakyat is committed to driving efficiencies and innovation within our operations to ensure that we consistently fulfill the needs of the financial services industry. We are delighted to be part of this initiative as we look forward to offering an effective cross-border payment experience for our customers.”

Press Contacts:
Jaime Lee
[email protected]

About gpi

The SWIFT global payments innovation (SWIFT gpi) is the largest change in cross-border payments over the last 30 years and is the new standard. SWIFT gpi dramatically improves the customer experience in cross-border payments by increasing their speed, transparency and end-to-end tracking. Hundreds of thousands of cross-border payments are today being sent using the new gpi standard, and payments are made quickly, typically within minutes, even seconds.

SWIFT gpi allows corporates to receive an enhanced payments service, with the following key features:

  • Faster, same day use of funds within the time zone of the receiving gpi member
  • Transparency of fees
  • End-to-end payments tracking
  • Remittance information transferred unaltered

As an initiative, SWIFT gpi engages the global banking industry and fintech communities to innovate in the area of cross-border payments while reducing their back-office costs. Since its launch in January 2017, gpi has dramatically improved the cross-border payments experience for corporates in over 600 country corridors. Key features of the gpi service include enhanced business rules and a secure tracking database in the cloud accessible via APIs. Thanks to SWIFT gpi, corporates can grow their international business, improve supplier relationships, and achieve greater treasury efficiencies. Overall, nearly 50% of SWIFT gpi payments are credited to end beneficiaries within 30 minutes, and almost 100% of payments within 24 hours. Those that take longer typically involve more complex foreign exchange conversions, compliance checks or regulatory authorisations.

In addition to the more than 230 financial institutions that have adopted gpi, over 55 payment market infrastructures are already exchanging gpi payments, enabling domestic exchange and tracking. Payment market infrastructures have a critical role to play in facilitating the end-to-end tracking of cross-border payments because as soon as international payments hit the destination country, they are typically cleared through local payment infrastructures.


SWIFT is a global member owned cooperative and the world’s leading provider of secure financial messaging services. We provide our community with a platform for messaging and standards for communicating, and we offer products and services to facilitate access and integration, identification, analysis and regulatory compliance.

Our messaging platform, products and services connect more than 11,000 banking and securities organisations, market infrastructures and corporate customers in more than 200 countries and territories. While SWIFT does not hold funds or manage accounts on behalf of customers, we enable our global community of users to communicate securely, exchanging standardised financial messages in a reliable way, thereby supporting global and local financial flows, as well as trade and commerce all around the world.

As their trusted provider, we relentlessly pursue operational excellence; we support our community in addressing cyber threats; and we continually seek ways to lower costs, reduce risks and eliminate operational inefficiencies. Our products and services support our community’s access and integration, business intelligence, reference data and financial crime compliance needs. SWIFT also brings the financial community together — at global, regional and local levels — to shape market practice, define standards and debate issues of mutual interest or concern.

Headquartered in Belgium, SWIFT’s international governance and oversight reinforces the neutral, global character of its cooperative structure. SWIFT’s global office network ensures an active presence in all the major financial centres.

For more information, visit www.swift.com or follow us on Twitter: @swiftcommunity and LinkedIn: SWIFT.


Upcoming Events

MGBF In The News