Residents of Turkey will soon be able to transfer money between their accounts at different banks on a 24/7 basis through a new retail payment system the country’s central bank will be putting into use.
Preparations for the Instant and Continuous Transfer of Funds (FAST) system have been completed, and it will become operational on Dec. 18 as a pilot run, the Central Bank of the Republic of Turkey (CBRT) said in a statement on Thursday.
It will gradually be put into full service and will cover all financial institutions in a short time.
Turkish citizens are currently able to carry out money transfers between accounts at different banks until 5 p.m., while some lenders enable transfers 24/7 between accounts of the same bank.
Along with FAST, users will also be able to initiate payments by using data such as telephone or ID numbers as well as e-mail addresses through the Easy Addressing System, the CBRT said.
The bank said the move would mark a significant step in its endeavors to develop the country’s retail payment systems infrastructure to support innovative financial technologies and methods of executing and handling payments.
“These developments, which will strengthen the basic infrastructure in the field of payments, will make innovative financial technologies an indispensable part of daily life and provide major contributions to the target of a full-fledged digital economy,” the statement read.
Customers will no longer have to use "long" International Bank Account Numbers (IBAN) while making money transfers, private lender Işbank said in a statement.
The bank’s individual customers have started to match their phone numbers and e-mails with their accounts over its internet branch and mobile application as of Nov. 2, Işbank Deputy General Manager Şahismail Şimşek said.
Şimşek said their commercial customers would also soon be able to benefit from the system.
Another private lender, Akbank, said in a statement that local individual customers would be able to make transfer payments of up TL 1,000 ($130) with the FAST system.