The Project 2020 Technology Committee was established to explore opportunities that would provide Credit Unions with optimal access and utilization of Technology. More specifically, the project seeks to enable Credit Unions’ ownership and control of technological systems that will facilitate:
- Participation in the national payments system.
- The provision of online services to members.
- Significant trading in foreign exchange.
- Increased market share.
The Committee’s first initiative examined Credit Unions’ participation in the national payments system as it relates to the provision of Debit card services, Automated Clearing House (ACH) transactions, and Mobile Banking.
Payment systems is a broad term encompassing credit, debit and online payment services. In Trinidad and Tobago, payment systems are regulated by the Central Bank of Trinidad and Tobago (CBTT) because they are deemed systemically important, i.e. they possess the potential to trigger or transmit systemic disruptions throughout the financial system. Credit Unions are not regulated under the Financial Institutions Act and therefore cannot participate directly in the national payment system but must do so through an intermediary. This presents a serious challenge for Credit Unions seeking to offer Debit cards and other online payment systems to their members.
The Technology Committee met with several organisations to better understand Trinidad and Tobago’s national payment system and the offerings available for participation by the Credit Union Movement. The Committee’s findings were considered and received approval for the funding of a feasibility study. It is envisaged that a phased approach to participation will be required. Therefore, discussions continue with payment systems providers and other stakeholders to seek ways whereby Credit Unions can achieve parity in the National Payments System, or, at the very least, a more cost-effective participation model.
If your Credit Union is interested in being a part of this paramount project, call us at 665 9734 or email at email@example.com for additional information.