Globalisation : the implications for and challenges to the payments systems in South Africa

De Bruyn, Johan Hendrik (2002-12)

Thesis (MBA)--Stellenbosch University, 2002.


ENGLISH ABSTRACT: Payment systems can be defined as a funds transfer system processing third party payments, supervised by a central bank or appropriate Regulatory Authority. (S.W.I.F.T., 1997). Therefore the importance of a well managed system, through regulatory methods, as well as self-regulation by the industry, cannot be over emphasized. According to Humphrey, (1996: 923), the composition of non-cash transactions consists of the following five payment instruments. The paper-based transactions are composed of cheques and paperbased giros payments. The electronic transactions consist of electronic giro, debit card (POS), and credit card payments. According to Vives, (1998: 168) there are normally two goals when a country wants to change its payment system, either it wants to increase efficiency, or it wants to reduce risk. If there is a conflict between risk and efficiency, the less risky solution must prevail. Credit risk and systemic risk poses the greatest challenges to payment systems. Credit risk exists when credit was granted to a participating member, which cannot fulfil its debt at the stage of payment need to be made. Systematic risks encompass situations in which the credit or liquidity problems for one or more market participants create substantial credit or liquidity problems for participants elsewhere in the financial system. (Emmons, 1997: 11). In order to create international standards in addressing the risk issues involved the Bank of International Settlements was established. The Bank's predominant tasks are to promote the co-operation of central banks and to provide additional facilities for international financial operations, and to create and maintain stability of international monetary and financial systems. The Bank of International Settlements published the Lamfallussy report. From the findings of this report a series of policy recommendations regarding netting schemes. The Basle Committee was established by the Central Bank Governors of the Group of Ten countries as a result of serious failures and disturbances in the international currency and banking markets, with the main objective to improve the collaboration between bank supervisors world wide. The objective is met by using three different methods, namely. Exchange information on national supervisory arrangements, improving the effectiveness of techniques for supervising, and the setting of minimum supervisory guidelines and recommendations and recommended statements of best practices, expecting authorities to take steps to implement in their respective countries. To enable secure international payments the Society for Worldwide Inter-bank Financial Telecommunications (SWIFT) was created, with the mission to provide technology-based communication services across all financial markets through member banks and their market infrastructures so that they can meet their own and their end-customers' needs. There is a growing awareness among central banks of the need to ensure the integrity, the security and the stability of their country's payment system. The central bank's main function was to regulate the country's currency circulation, to facilitate' payment transactions and to pursue a credit and monetary policy serving the interest of the country as a whole. Because of their importance for the smooth operation of commerce of financial markets, central banks often own and/or operate large value payment networks themselves rather than leave this function solely to commercial banks. (Sato et a/., 1995: 37). Commercial banks, or their agents, perform the vast majority of the clearing and processing of payment in developed countries, as well as providing the payment facilities to clients. The United States central bank is the main exception to this division of responsibility as it provides settlement service as well as check processing and over one-half of all Automatic Clearing Houses and wire processing services. (Sato et a/., 1995: 32). The re-entry of South Africa in the global trade in the early 1990s created new opportunities and challenges for the country. With the existing established payment system, South Africa provides a gateway to the Southern African countries. There are a number of fundamental changes in the financial markets, which have an impact on payment and settlement systems. The first important factor is the high speed of technological progress. Secondly, the fundamental change in financial markets concerns the internationalisation of financial flows. From a central bank point of view, these developments, although in principle to be welcomed because of their contribution to the effect of allocation of financial resources, require close attention, as the interrelationships between worldwide financial markets could also give rise to a propagation of risks. (Koning, 1998: 19). South Africa's payments system, as a well-functioning system, compares favourably with the best in the world; this is an essential requirement for participation in the international finance and trading. The challenge the South African banks face is the social responsibility to uplift the community on the one side, and compliance with the international rules and legislation on the other. In accordance to the minimum requirements set by the Lamfallussy report. The Reserve Bank of South Africa enforced strong policies via the Banking Council of South Africa, as well as the different committees and associations dedicated to certain payment systems. The South African Reserve Bank intent to provide an Electronic Communications and Transactions Bill in order to promote and regulate electronic communication and transactions. The Banking Council set certain criteria that will be implemented from the first of January 2002 on the item limits applicable to the certain electronic methods of payment. Councils and associations in the banking sector are established, self-regulatory as well as government controlled, to enforce rules and regulations to reduce the risk involved in the industry and comply with international requirements. A strong legal framework and the enforcement of certain risk prevention methods, for instance the enforcement of item limits and the change in the law on the crossing of cheques prove the commitment to participate internationally. The strong movement to same day settlement, (especially in high value payments via the SAMOS system), show that the payment industry in South Africa is on an ongoing process of implementing new procedures to comply with the international standards. Electronic money can be defined as stored value or prepaid products in which a record of funds or value available to the consumer is stored on a device in the consumer's possession. (Bank of International Settlements, 2001: 1). Consumers benefit from the ability to use payment methods that are inexpensive, convenient, and accessible. (Bank of International Settlements, 1997: 6). The participation in the payment processes by non-financial entities, coupled with the design and widespread use of unknown digital form of monetary value poses serious threats to the central bank's ability to control monetary policy and safeguard financial stability. Card based e-money schemes have been combined with functionality's such as access control, holder identification or local transportation ticketing. Network-based e-money schemes are operational or under trail in a limited number of countries. The existing payment system legislation applies to networkbased schemes. The South African Reserve Bank needs to constantly monitor and analyse the existing and new different methods of payment systems in order to create a low risk, stable, safe and a trade supportive environment for the improvement of its own economy, as well as for the Southern African region. Specific attention needs to be given to the high-value payment systems in order to reduce systemic risk. The prevalent factor is the real time settlement of the SAM OS (South African Multi Option Settlement) system. Finally, regulators need to coordinate actions, through the international and local platforms provides, to implant financial discipline, manage risk and support cross-border and regional trade.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Betaalstelsels kan gedefinieer word as 'n opdragte- of fondsoorplasingstelsel vir die maak van betalings aan 'n derde party, wat gereguleer word deur 'n sentrale bank of regering. (SWIFT, 1997). Die belangrikheid van 'n goedgereguleerde stelsel, deur middel van wetgewing, sowel as selfregulering deur die industrie, kan nie oorbeklemtoon word nie. Humphry (1996: 923) beskryf die samestelling van nie-kontant betaalstelsels as die volgende vyf instrumente. Die papier gebaseerde transaksie wat uit tjeks, papier-gebaseerde "giro' bestaan. Elektroniese transaksies bestaan uit die elektroniese "giro", debiet- en kredietkaarte. Volgens Vives (1998: 168) is daar normaalweg twee doelwitte wanneer verandering aan 'n betaalstelsels aangebring word, naamlik die verbetering in doeltreffendheid, of die vermindering van risiko, waar die laer risiko gewoonlik die voorkeur sal kry. Kredietrisiko en sistemiese risiko hou die grootste uitdagings vir betaalstelsels in. Kredietrisiko ontstaan waar krediet aan 'n deelnemende lid van 'n stelsel verleen word en die ander party nie kan presteer op die tydstip van betaling nie. Sistemiese risko's sluit situasies in waar krediet of likiditeit probleme vir een of meerdere deelnemers vir ander deelnemers groot krediet of likiditeits probleme skep in die finansiële stelsel. (Emmons, 1997: 11). Om risiko's internasionaal aan te spreek is die Bank of International Settlements gestig. Die organisasie het ten doeI om koördinasie tussen die sentrale banke te bevorder en stabiliteit te skep in die internasionale monetêre en finansiële markte. Die Bank of International Settlements het die Lamfallussy verslag opgestel waarin verskeie beleid aanbevelings aangaande verrekeningstelsels gemaak word. Die Basle Committee is gestig deur die hoofde van die Groep van 10 lande se sentrale banke weens die mislukking en ontwrigting van geldeenhede en finansiële markte wêreldwyd, met die doelstelling om samewerking tussen banke wêreldwyd te bevorder. Dit word bereik deur drie metodes naamlik, uitruil van inligting wêreldwyd na adviseurs, verbetering in die verskaffing van advies en die daarstel van riglyne en aanbevelings aangaande die beste praktyke, wat regerings in hul eie lande kan aanwend. Vir die daarstelling van 'n gestandaardiseerde, veilige intenasionale opdragte en betalings stelsel is die Society for Worldwide Inter-bank Financial Telecommunications (SWIFT) gestig, met die missie om 'n tegnologie gebasseerde opdrag en kommunikasie stelsel daar te stel wat alle markte deur middel van lede lande en hul infrastrukture kliënte kan bedien. Daar is 'n toenemende bewuswording onder sentrale banke om die integriteit en die sekuriteit van hul eie betaalstelsel te verseker. Die hoof funksie van die sentrale bank is die regulering van die land se geldeenheid, om betalings moontlik te maak en die daarstel van krediet- en monetêre beleid vir die steun van die land se belange as geheel. Weens die belangrikheid in die suksesvolle werking van die kommersiële markte, besit sentrale banke groot gedeeltes van die verrekeningstelsels eerder om dit aan kommersiële banke oor te laat. (Sato et aI., 1995: 37). Elke sentrale bank verskaf verskillende verrekeningsdienste afhangende van faktore soos die verskillende regsfaktore, sosiale faktore, politieke faktore, internasionale- en mededingende faktore. Kommersiële banke, of hul agente, is verantwoordelik vir die oorgrootte van verwerkingsaksies in ontwikkelende lande, asook die verskaffing van die betalingsmiddele. Die Verenigde State se sentrale bank is die hoof uitsondering wat self die verrekeningsdienste lewer, die prosessering van tjeks doen, die verrekeningshuise besit en verwerking dienste lewer. (Sato et al., 1995: 32). Suid-Afrika se hertoetrede tot die internasionale finansiële wêreld in die vroeë jare negentig het geleenthede en uitdagings meegebring. Met 'n bestaande gevestigde betaalstelsel word Suid-Afrika beskou as die deur na die Suider- Afrikaanse lande. Verskeie fundamentele veranderinge in die finansiële markte het 'n impak op die betaal- en verrekeningstelsels. Eerstens die spoed van tegnologiese vooruitgang; tweedens die verandering van die finansiële markte in terme van kapitaalvloei. Uit die oogpunt van 'n sentrale bank, verg die toekenning van finansiële hulpbronne, intense aandag, omdat die interverwantskappe van finansiële markte wêreldwyd risiko's verhoog. (Koning, 1998: 19). Suid-Afrika beskik oor 'n goed funksionerende betaalstelsel wat vergelyk kan word met die bestes ter wêreld en is van uiterste belang vir die internasionale deelname in finansiering en handel. Suid-Afrikaanse banke staan voor die uitdaging om aan sy sosiale verantwoordelikhede te voldoen om die gemeeskap op te bou aan die een kant en die vereistes om aan internasionale standaarde te voldoen, soos deur die Lamfallussy veslag voorgeskryf, aan die ander kant. Die Reserwe bank van Suid-Afrika dwing beleid af via die Banking Council of South Africa, asook verskeie kommisies en verenigings wat fokus op die verskeie betaalstelsels. Die Reserwebank van Suid-Afrika beoog om 'n "Electronic Communications and Transaction Bill" teen die einde van 2001 te publiseer vir die regulering van elektroniese kommunikasie en traksaksies. In Wetlike raamwerk en die afdwing van sekere risiko verminderende metodes, byvoorbeeld item limiete, wat gedurende Januarie 2002 in werking gestel word en die wysiging in die kruising van tjeks dui op die drastiese stappe wat aangebring word om internasionaal mededingend te wees, asook by internasionale riglyne in te pas. Daadwerklike pogings om selfde dag verrekeninge in die hoë waardestelsel (SAMOS) te implementeer en te voldoen aan die neergelegde internasionale standaarde. Elektroniese geld word gedefinieer as 'n gememoriseerde waarde of voorafbetaalde produkte waarin rekord van fondse of beskikbare waardes van 'n kliënt gehou word. (Bank of International Settlements, 2001: 1). Verbruikers kry die voordeel van maklik toeganklike en goedkoop betalingsmetodes. (Bank of International Settlements, 1997: 6). Die deelname van nie-finansiële instansies in die betalingsprosesse, daarmee saam die ontwerp en algemene gebruik van onbekende digitale vorms van monetêre waardes hou 'n bedreiging in vir die beheer van die sentrale bank om monetêre beleid af te dwing en finansiële stabiliteit te verseker. Kaartgebaseerde elektroniese geldskema's word in sekere gevalle is die fasiliteit gekombineer met funksionaliteit in die vorm van toegangsbeheer, houer identifikasie, of plaaslike transport kaarte. Netwerk gebaseerde elektroniese geldskema's is slegs in beperkte aantal lande operasioneel of onder ontwikkeling en bestaande wetgewing aangaande betaalstelsels word hoofsaaklik toegepas op die skema's. Daar word voorgestel dat die Suid-Afrikaanse Reserwebank moet op 'n voortdurende basis bestaande en nuwe verskillende betaalstelsels moniteer vir die daarstelling van 'n verlaagde risiko, met 'n stabiele- en veilige omgewing wat steun verleen aan die land se ekonomie, sowel as die omliggende Suider- Afrikaanse lande. Verdere pogings moet aangewend word word om hoë-waarde betaalstelsels (SAMOS) se sistemiese risiko te verminder deur van dieselfde dag vereffening gebruik te maak. Ter afsluiting moet daar met gekoordineerde aksies, wat plaaslik en internasionaal bestaan, aangewend word om finansiële dissipline daar te stel, risko's te bestuur en internasionale handel te bevorder.

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