Ripple has signed an agreement with the Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority (SAMA) to create a pilot programme in support of KSA banks who choose to use xCurrent to instantly settle cross-border payments.
The first of its kind to be launched by a central bank, the pilot programme will support KSA banks with a regulatory sandbox, programme management and training.
Dilip Rao, global head of infrastructure innovation, Ripple, says: “Central banks around the world are leaning into blockchain technology in recognition of how it can transform cross-border payments, resulting in lower barriers to trade and commerce for both corporates and consumers. SAMA is leading the charge as the first central bank to provide resources to domestic banks that want to enable instant payments using Ripple’s innovative blockchain solution.”
Rao was appointed head of Ripple's new infrastructure innovation team in December with the aim of providing consultation and support to central banks and financial market infrastructures in the use of distributed ledger technology.
Designed for enterprise use, Ripple's xCurrent offers low-cost cross-border transfers aligned with end-to-end tracking and bidirectional messaging. Using xCurrent, banks message each other in real-time to confirm payment details prior to initiating the transaction and to confirm delivery once it settles.