Building block 10: Improving (direct) access to payment systems by banks, non-banks and payment infrastructures

Access to key domestic payment systems helps banks, non-bank payment service providers (PSPs) and financial market infrastructures (FMIs) to provide cross-border payment services safely and efficiently. In particular, expanded access can level the playing field for PSPs and foster greater competition and innovation. Direct participation can reduce the number of intermediaries in transaction chains, hence lowering the prefunding costs incurred by market participants without access to payment systems.

However, expanded access may also broaden risk for participants and operators and will need to be appropriately considered. Authorities and payment system operators may also face further complexities in areas such as legal eligibility and alignment of regulatory standards, among others.


Improving access to key payment systems that settle in central bank money would support progress on other building blocks of the G20 programme. In particular, access to real-time gross settlement (RTGS) systems – typically owned and operated by central banks – is critical for market participants who need to settle obligations in central bank money. However, only a minority of systems settling in central bank money currently provide direct access to the three important types of cross-border payment provider: non-bank PSPs, foreign banks and FMIs. Collaboration and coordination across jurisdictions considering expanding access to these systems simultaneously could amplify the benefits for cross-border payments.


  • In 2021, the CPMI surveyed 82 jurisdictions to take stock of current payment system access policies and practices, and subsequently held focused discussions and workshops with PSPs to support the assessment of direct access objectives, benefits and barriers.

In May 2022, the CPMI published a best practices framework for the self-assessment of access policies to key payment systems.