P27 – The new Nordic payment platform

Insights | Blog Post
02.06.2021

P27 Nordic Payments Platform is a Nordic initiative with the vision to create a common modern and future-proof infrastructure for payments in the Nordic region. It is a joint initiative by Danske Bank, Handelsbanken, Nordea, Swedbank, SEB and OP Financial Group, where the purpose is to promote trade and financial interaction within and between the Nordic countries, enabling real-time payments across borders among others.

The name P27 comes from the project’s aim to improve payments for the 27 million inhabitants in the Nordic countries. A common infrastructure and open access will provide several benefits for the Nordic societies like increased trade, growth and employment as well as a modern payment experience to customers. It will also provide a foundation for future developments and services, by banks and other creative players in the market.

For Lumera’s customers, this is an important initiative and the focus will lie on preparing for the changeover that P27 will require. The approach needs to be analyzed by each company, based on its individual circumstances. Banks and other payment service providers should already start to consider how to take advantage of the opportunities that lie ahead with the new payment infrastructure, and what services they would like to offer customers in the future. However, the official launch of P27 services is subject to regulatory approvals and therefore P27 will not conduct any business activities until required regulatory approvals are obtained.

Simplified payments and lower costs 

The current payment infrastructure is outdated and needs to be updated through a more flexible platform. P27 will enable real-time and cross-border payments to be carried out quickly and at a low cost on a secure and all-around platform. The new platform will initially allow payments to flow instantly between people and businesses within Sweden, Norway, Denmark and Finland, which is something that will benefit growth and development in the region. The platform will be designed to be expandable to allow for payments across the rest of the Nordics as well, which will contribute to the strengthening of the Nordic payment ecosystem.

Time plan

The P27 project will last for several years and undergo several stages. The first part of the migration refers to payments in Swedish SEK within Sweden during 2023-2024, with the ambition to have the first transaction in the new payment infrastructure processed during 2023. Then comes Denmark, Finland and Norway, with their own transformation plans.

The migration of the Swedish banks’ payment platform to P27 is led by a transformation committee within the Banking Association (Bankföreningen). Gradually, as the project is introduced in the other Nordic countries, the payment services are supposed to work evenly across national borders and regardless of which currency you want to use.

What actions do you need to take?

As a private person, the introduction of P27 will not implicate any major changes. Corporate customers with file communication to the bank will notice the change the most, as they may need to change the file format. An important part of the conversion is that file communication will take place in accordance with the format standard ISO 20022. Thus, older formats will be phased out. Therefore, it’s important you make sure that your business system is “P27 compliant”.

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