The Access Bank UK Limited has today (30th July 2018) become a full participant of the Cheque and Credit Clearing Company’s Image Clearing System, bringing the total number of participants in the ICS to 18.
The Access Bank UK Limited is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Access Bank Plc, a Nigerian Stock Exchange-listed company, and the UK plays a key role in the group’s vision to be the world’s most respected African bank. Central to this aspiration is the organisation’s focus on service and commitment, to build long-term relationships with its business and consumer customers.
The Image Clearing System was launched in the UK as a phased roll-out on 30th October 2017. As banks and building societies connect their various deposit channels into this new clearing infrastructure, it enables them to exchange images of cheques electronically for clearing and payment, significantly speeding up the clearing process.
Alan McDonald, General Manager of the Cheque and Credit Clearing Company, said:
“It is great news that The Access Bank UK has become a participant in the Image Clearing System. Simplifying the payments marketplace and reducing barriers to entry is one of our key business objectives, so we are pleased that our participant numbers continue to increase through opening up access to cheques for banks, building societies and non-bank payment service providers alike.”
The Access Bank’s UK Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, Jamie Simmonds, said:
“Today marks another key development for The Access Bank UK as we join the Cheque and Credit Clearing Company’s Image Clearing System, a move which follows a year of significant all-round growth for us in 2017.
“Our ethos is based on building the trust and loyalty of our customers and we have a clear commitment to strong customer service. Joining the Image Clearing System is yet another example of this approach, as we further improve and increase the services we offer.”
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Notes to editors:
The Cheque and Credit Clearing Company Limited (C&CCC) is a wholly owned subsidiary of the new home for UK retail payments, the New Payment System Operator (NPSO). The C&CCC managed the cheque and credit clearing system in England and Wales from 1985 and in Scotland from 1996. Since its launch in October 2017 the company has also managed the Image Clearing System, which enables digital images of cheques to be exchanged between banks and building societies across the whole of the UK for clearing and settlement.
As well as clearing sterling cheques drawn on UK bank accounts and other eligible debit items (bankers’ drafts, postal orders, warrants, government payable orders and travellers’ cheques) the paper clearing system and the Image Clearing System process bill payments (credits) accompanied by cash or cheques.
The oversight, systemic risk management and strategic direction of the running and managing of the cheque paper and cheque image clearing systems has been handed over to the board of NPSO as the System Operator. All payments continue to be processed as usual. As a wholly-owned subsidiary of the NPSO, the C&CCC will continue to support the paper clearing system for cheques and credits and the Image Clearing System (ICS).
Introduction of the image-based system means that if a customer pays in a cheque on a weekday and it is cleared via the Image Clearing System, they will be able to withdraw the funds by 23.59 on the next weekday (excluding bank holidays) at the latest, with many banks and building societies likely to allow access to the funds earlier than this.