Mastercard joins forces with US banking titans for tokenized settlement trials

Avatar


Payment processing and settlement firm Mastercard has joined hands with major banking institutions in the United States, such as Citigroup, Visa and JPMorgan, to test the use of distributed ledger technology for banking settlements using tokenization.

The partnership between the banking giants and the payment processor aims to test shared-ledger technology called Regulated Settlement Network (RSN). RSN enables tokenized assets like Treasury, investment-grade debt instruments, and money from commercial banks to be settled collectively.

Currently, securities like investment-grade debt and assets like money from commercial banks function on different systems. Using RSN, settlement procedures will occur on a single platform by converting various assets into tokens and settling them on a distributed ledger.

The current phase of trials expands on a 12-week pilot phase that started in late 2022. The test was earlier focused on cross-border and domestic dollar payments between banks. The ongoing proof-of-concept (PoC) RSN trials are focused on simulating settlements in the United States dollar.

In a statement on May 8, Mastercard said the project is focused on increasing the efficiency of cross-border settlements and reducing the chance of error and fraud.

Raj Dhamodharan, Head of Blockchain and Digital Assets at Mastercard, said that the “application of shared ledger technology to dollar settlements could unlock the next generation of market infrastructures — where programmable settlements are 24/7 and frictionless.”

Related: Visa and Mastercard: A boon for wallet holders, a threat to crypto exchanges?

The RSN PoC has seen two significant additions to the participating banking institutions: interbank tokenized deposit networks — USDF Consortium will be a direct participant, and the Tassat Group will be a contributor. Another banking giant, Deloitte, provides advisory services. The program manager will be the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association (SIFMA).

There are a total of 10 participant banking giants, namely Citi, JPMorgan, Mastercard, Swift, TD Bank N.A., U.S. Bank, USDF, Wells Fargo, Visa, and Zions Bancorp.

Six more project participants will offer their subject-matter expertise. These include the nonprofit MITRE Corporation, BNY Mellon, Broadridge, the DTCC, ISDA, and Tassat Group.

Magazine: Crypto in the Philippines: Necessity is the mother of adoption