The Bank of Thailand is responsible for supervising and maintaining stability of payment systems, one key mechanism that facilitates and bolsters economic activities through flexible, safe, and effective settlements. The BOT has three major roles regarding payment systems including:
1. Determination of payment systems policy as well as development direction to enhance efficiency of the payment systems such as promoting more convenience payment channels that respond to demand from various groups of users, setting standard, and establishing connection between payment service providers.
2. Payment systems supervision to ensure that electronics payment is sound, secured, and in line with international standard.
3. Provides protection and educates users to make them understand rights and responsibilities so that they are capable of choosing appropriate services and create confidence in using payment systems.
The Payment Systems Committee (PSC), chaired by the BOT Governor, is responsible for setting payment systems policy that is consistent with business development and technological advancement.
The BOT has continuously developed and promoted payment systems to ensure they are up to date, efficient, and able to accommodate demand of present users. Among key payment services are:
- BAHTNET (Bank of Thailand Automated High-value Transfer Network) the financial infrastructure that enables payer to make same-day transfer of a large amount of money via electronics system to payee whose deposit account is at different bank than the payer.
- Imaged Cheque Clearing and Archive System (ICAS) an imaged-based interbank cheque clearing system that reduces the need to process actual cheque and shortens cheque clearing cycle to one-day nationwide. The implementation of ICAS enhances the efficiency of Thailand’s cheque clearing process, allowing banks to extend cheque deposit period and reduce costs of transporting actual cheque. Furthermore, the BOT has also improved the cheque standard to accommodate safe and smooth settlement under the ICAS system.
- Bulk Payment System a convenient mean of payment for preauthorized interbank fund transfers that are large in volume and have regular recurring payment period such as payment of salary, wage, and dividend. The system allows payers to submit transfer orders in advance to originating bank and receiving bank will put the transferred funds into accounts of payees at any branches.
- On-line Retail Fund Transfer (ORFT) a service that enhances efficiency of commercial banks’ operations and payment system by allowing clients to make interbank fund transfer through ATM on-line network. The maximum transfer amount and related fees are subject to types of ATM cards and are set by issuer banks.
The payment systems development is conducted under the current framework of Payment Systems Roadmap 2012 – 2016, aiming to boost payment systems efficiency, reduce settlement risks, protect and educate users by focusing on:
- Promoting and developing electronics transactions such as Mobile payment/banking, e-money, the establishment of Local Switching system (to bolster locally issued debit or ATM cards), and standard of messages used in sending payment information.
- Promoting payment services accessibility such as mobile payment.
- Improving safety in electronics card usages to enhance confidence in using debit cards, ATM cards, and electronics money.
- Preparing for the upcoming establishment of the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) by arranging settlement infrastructure to accommodate payments among ASEAN and enable cross-border electronics payments such as Asian Payment Network, which is ASEAN electronics card network.
- Reducing risks on net settlement by setting risk management standards for different types of net settlement risks.
- Protecting and educating users to enable them to choose appropriate services and create confidence in using payment services.
Useful information about payment systems for academic scholars and students:
- Definition of payment systems terms
- Payment transactions
- Evolution of cheque clearing systems in Thailand
- Payment systems notification & circular
- E-Payment service providers supervision
- Annual Report
- Risks in payment systems
- Payment systems policy
- Related laws and regulations
- Standard payment barcode