Published: April 20, 2022
The first quarter of 2022 saw the continued seamless operation of Canada’s national payment systems. The Automated Clearing Settlement System (ACSS) and Lynx continue to operate smoothly, and this past quarter our systems cleared and settled over two billion transactions valued at more than $31 trillion.
March marked six months since the implementation of Lynx. Since its launch in 2021, Lynx has met expectations and is running flawlessly. System availability is at 99.91% and to date, Lynx has cleared and settled over seven million transactions valued at $70.7 trillion and supports the broader functioning of the Canadian financial system. For those of you new to this system, I encourage you to discover more about Lynx.
Work on Lynx Release Two is well underway, in partnership with our 17 participants, our technology partners IBM and Nexi Group (formerly SIA), and the Bank of Canada. Our project deliverables remain on track, with the focus shifting to industry testing and implementation planning as we prepare for the introduction of ISO 20022 messaging in November 2022.
The increased functionality provided by the ISO 20022 message standard will allow for more data to travel with each payment. This data can be leveraged to provide improved payment experiences for consumers and businesses. The introduction and adoption of ISO 20022 will align Canada with our global payment partners. We encourage all members to review the updated ISO 20022 message specifications for Lynx and the ISO 20022 message specifications for the RTR to support preparations to fully leverage the value of ISO 20022.
The Real-Time Rail (RTR) build phase is on track and we are now less than 50 days away from pre-integration testing. This will be the first time that all of the RTR components will be tested together as one system. Our newest partner, Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) has been named the integration test lead for the RTR. Their expertise in large-scale technology transformation is a definite asset to the RTR project. RTR APIs are now available and provide a view into the RTR capabilities. We encourage you to check them out - they are available via our developer portal.
Broader membership and participation in Canada’s payment systems is an important objective of Payments Canada’s Modernization program as this will lead to increased competition and innovation for the benefit of Canadian consumers and businesses.
On April 7, the Department of Finance released the 2022 federal budget without mention of amendments to the Canadian Payments Act required to support broader membership. Despite this omission, we remain confident that the federal government is committed to, and appreciates the importance of, payments modernization. Next steps are the publication of the Department of Finance’s public consultation paper on proposed amendments to the Canadian Payments Act, followed by the publication of a Payments Canada consultation paper addressing the proposed modifications to Payments Canada by-laws to support the amended Canadian Payments Act. Payments Canada will continue to work with the Department of Finance to ensure Canadian Payments Act amendments will be enacted in advance of the launch of the Real-Time Rail.
Ongoing collaboration with regulators, members and stakeholders is critical to ensure that payment systems meet the needs of Canadians and Canadian businesses now and in the future. Thank you for your ongoing engagement and support.
President & CEO