The language of cross‑border payments

As part of an industry-wide transition, OCBC is making the move to ISO 20022 CBPR+. Discover the benefits and what it means for you.


ISO 20022 CBPR+ (Cross-border Payments and Reporting) is the new unified standard for cross-border financial messages that allows financial institutions, market infrastructures and customers to ‘communicate’ with one another. The ISO 20022 CBPR+ standard enables richer and better-structured transaction data to be included in payment messages. It also aims to improve customer experience by enabling increased automated processing, more accurate compliance processes, higher resilience and improved fraud prevention measures.

While banks need to be ready to support the new standard to continue processing payments, customers should also prepare for changes.


ISO 20022 CBPR+ will be adopted in phases over multiple years. The migration phase, which starts in March 2023, will primarily affect the banks. Later phases will introduce rich data elements that will benefit Corporates. These include:


ISO 20022 CBPR+ migration will start on 20 March 2023 with banks being required to receive and process ISO 20022 MX-format payment messages.

Traditional MT- and ISO 20022 MX-format payment messages will coexist from then until November 2025. During this coexistence period, the SWIFT messaging network will gradually introduce rich data elements.

when will it commence
when will it commence
when will it commence
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What is the ISO 20022 CBPR+ migration initiative?

ISO 20022 CBPR+ is a SWIFT initiative to migrate payment messages towards ISO 20022 standards.

CBPR+ (Cross-border Payments and Reporting Plus) is a set of specifications for ISO 20022 cross-border financial messages. CBPR+ messages are also referred to as ISO 20022 “MX” messages.

It aims to address limitations arising from different payment formats used by institutions, such as manual processing incurred by unstructured payment data.

When will ISO 20022 CBPR+ happen?

ISO 20022 CBPR+ migration will start from 20 March 2023 onwards, following a coexistence period wherein traditional MT and ISO 20022 MX-format payment messages will coexist until November 2025.

When will the retirement of MT messages commence?

SWIFT has guided the retirement of MT category 1, 2 and 9 FIN messages, which will be happening in November 2025.

Note: MT 2 series (e.g., MT202) will be applicable for Financial Institutional Clients.

What benefits could we realise from the ISO 20022 CBPR+ migration initiative?

While the ISO 20022 CBPR+ cutover in 20 March 2023 will predominantly affect banks during the coexistence period between 20 March 2023 and November 2025, SWIFT/Industry will gradually introduce rich data elements which can benefit Corporates by provided Structured Data, New Fields and Extended Field Length. Examples are shown below.

OCBC will communicate the delivery of such benefits to customers when the industry is ready.

  1. Structured Data. E.g., F59 Beneficiary Address will be replaced with Structured Address fields to remove the ambiguity of free text address, aiding in faster and more accurate screenings for banks’ processing. Client Benefit: Faster turnaround for transactions, fewer rejections due to insufficient/inaccurate address details.

    Illustration: Structured
    ISO 20022 CBPR+ table
  2. New Fields, E.g., End-to-End Identification, a Unique identification, as assigned by the initiating party, to unambiguously identify the transaction. This identification is passed on and remains unchanged throughout the entire end-to-end chain. Client Benefit: New field which Clients could input e.g., invoice details, which would be relayed throughout the payment chain.
  3. Extended Field Length. E.g., Current Beneficiary Name Field 35 char extended to 140 char, allowing name input of extended field lengths. Client Benefit: Clients could input longer names.
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