What We Do

The Canadian economy depends on the exchange of billions of dollars each day. Payments Canada ensures that these financial transactions in Canada are carried out safely and securely. 

We underpin the Canadian financial system and economy by owning and operating Canada’s payment clearing and settlement infrastructure, including associated systems, bylaws, rules and standards.


Grey banner which reads "TOP ACHIEVEMENTS FOR 2019 In 2019, Payments Canada cleared and settled more than 8.3 billion transactions, totalling $55 trillion, or $218 billion each business day. "


Essential payments infrastructure

We provide Canada’s national payments systems. Our Large Value System lets financial institutions and their customers send large payments securely, and our Retail System is where the vast majority of day-to-day Canadian commerce is cleared by our financial institutions. The value of payments cleared by Payments Canada’s systems in 2019 was approximately $55 trillion or $218 billion every business day. These encompass a wide range of payments made by Canadians and businesses involving inter-bank transactions, including those made with debit cards, pre-authorized debits, direct deposits, bill payments, wire payments and cheques. 

All Our Systems


Connecting a fluid and vibrant economy

The less Canadians notice payments the better, but they must always remain safe and secure. That’s why we collaborate with stakeholders across the payments ecosystem to create the necessary balance of rules and standards, with efficient infrastructure to achieve optimized, low-friction value flow. 

We connect through ideas, research, rules and standards and through our systems, like a complex network of bridges and roads to create the necessary balance of rules and standards, with efficient infrastructure to achieve optimized, low-friction value flow. 

How We Collaborate Corporate Plan


Meeting the needs of Canadians

We have a long history of providing the payments infrastructure that has allowed Canadians, their businesses and their institutions to exchange value. But the world is changing fast, and so are payments. New technology is transforming the way we pay. And we are working to provide a platform that allows those in the payments ecosystem to innovate and provide Canadians with convenient, safe, and efficient payment options.

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Collaborating within a changing ecosystem

In pursuing our mandate, we must be cognizant of the environment in which we operate and the need to balance a wide spectrum of stakeholders with different, and sometimes divergent, interests. As we manage these diverse points of view, we must at the same time be mindful of the highly regulated environment in which we operate. These factors combine to create an operating environment that is complex and, at times, challenging. However, given our deep payments knowledge and highly experienced staff, we are well positioned to succeed.

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What's Clearing and Settlement?

Every day, Canadian consumers, businesses and governments use a variety of “payment items” to purchase goods and services, make financial investments and transfer funds from one person to another. Many of these transactions involve customers from two different financial institutions. Clearing and settlement is how financial institutions exchange payments amongst themselves, calculate how much is owed to each other as a result, and transfer funds to settle those balances.