Q4 Delivery Roadmap update

As 2022 draws to a close, we continue to see the safe and sound operation of Canada’s national payment systems. The Automated Clearing Settlement System (ACSS) and Lynx continue to operate smoothly and, so far this quarter, have cleared and settled over 1.8 billion transactions valued at more than $20 trillion.

This last quarter of 2022 began with the approval and publication of amendments to Rule H1. These changes were introduced to improve the pre-authorized debit experience for consumers and businesses. Amendments to this rule now make pre-authorized debit agreement obligations easier to understand, and provide a payor more confidence when signing an agreement.

Our annual research publication, the Canadian Payment Methods and Trends report was released in October. The report analyzes 19.7 billion payment transactions made in 2021, totalling $10.8 trillion, and highlights the trends observed in the Canadian payment landscape. Understanding the payment attitudes and behaviours of consumers and businesses is crucial to informing Payments Canada’s strategy. We also recently published new research on buy now, pay later — a payment trend being driven primarily by young Canadians, and the benefits that modern payment options will bring to small businesses. Through this research, as well as our discussion papers and other market research, we provide our members and the broader payment industry with insights into the evolving payment ecosystem.

This quarter, we also had to make some difficult, but necessary, decisions.

In October, Swift rescheduled the start of the global ISO 20022 migration for cross-border payments and reporting (CBPR+) from November 2022 to March 2023. This new timeframe created a ripple effect for financial market infrastructures around the world which were gearing up to implement ISO 20022 this year.

In collaboration with Lynx participants, our partners (IBM and Nexi), and the Bank of Canada, we successfully deployed the technology needed to introduce ISO 20022 to Lynx, as planned. However, after extensive consultation with our members, to acknowledge of the impacts on Lynx participants, we made the decision to postpone the go-live of Lynx Release Two (the activation of the technology) until March 2023, in alignment with Swift’s revised implementation date.

Also in October, we determined the need for revised launch timing for the Real-Time Rail (RTR). We are working closely with our members, regulators and stakeholders to confirm the revised launch date. Part of this work includes conducting a third-party review of the RTR program, a common practice for how we oversee our large programs. We look forward to the review findings, which we will take into account as part of the replan. The new launch date will be publicly announced once confirmed.

Activities in our other RTR work streams continue to progress, including system testing and the delivery of the legal framework. Our delivery partners continue to progress with their system builds, and integration test is underway. The legal framework (which includes the rules and by-laws) are essential to ensuring the smooth operation of our systems. The draft RTR by-laws were approved by Payments Canada’s Board of Directors in December 2022 and the RTR rules are scheduled to be approved in 2023.

We continue to work with the Department of Finance to broaden access to our systems by calling for changes to the Canadian Payments Act. When amendments are made, payment service providers will be eligible for Payments Canada membership and, by extension, able to participate directly in our systems. To learn more about what expanded membership will bring to Canada’s payment ecosystem, I encourage you to read this interview with Hanna Zaidi from Wealthsimple.

As Payments Canada moves through the Modernization journey, we remain committed to publishing a public-facing update annually in December. Explore our recently published 2022 Delivery Roadmap to learn more about the progress made this year and what’s planned for 2023.

I want to take this opportunity to wish you all a happy and restful holiday season. The Payments Canada team looks forward to working closely with you in the new year as we work towards modernizing Canada’s payment systems to meet the needs of Canadians.

Tracey Black
President and CEO
Payments Canada

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