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Reserve Bank considers eligibility changes for its settlement accounts

We are consulting on a new risk assessment framework proposed to evaluate applications to bank with us directly.

"Our Exchange Settlement Account System (ESAS) is currently used by 12 major banks, 5 large institutions, and us to settle transactions immediately and irrevocably,” says Assistant Governor Karen Silk. 

“ESAS helps ensure stability in the financial system and provides a direct way for our monetary policy decisions to influence the economy as we pay interest on ESAS balances at the Official Cash Rate.  

“We receive regular approaches from a variety of institutions seeking access to ESAS. Broader access could enable and encourage welcome innovation in the financial system but may also pose risks. The proposed risk assessment framework seeks to provide a fair and transparent way to assess an ESAS applicant’s risk profile and considers relevant international standards. 

“Our consultation paper is open for feedback from today — 15 June 2023 until late July (27 July 2023). We intend to analyse feedback and then consult on a revised ESAS access policy before the end of September, announce the final policy by the end of 2023, and be processing applications using it in early 2024,” Ms Silk says. 

More information

Find out more about our current ESAS access policy

Read New Zealand’s payment landscape: a primer

Media contact

Peter Northcote
Senior Advisor External Stakeholders 
Phone: 04 471 3821
Email: [email protected]