Iran Considers Transition from SWIFT to 'BRICS PAY': Speaker

Iran Considers Transition from SWIFT to 'BRICS PAY': Speaker

TEHRAN (Tasnim) – In the wake of its imminent membership in the BRICS group of emerging economies, Iran is exploring the possibility of adopting the group’s electronic banking communication system, “BRICS PAY,” as an alternative to the SWIFT system, the speaker of the Parliament said.

Speaking in an open session of the Iranian parliament, Mohammad Baqer Qalibaf said that Iran will access BRICS PAY as of January 1, 2024 to overcome the financial problems created by the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication (SWIFT).

“That gives us a major chanceto work with big countries,” he said while elaborating on the growing trade between Iran and original BRICS member states, namely Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa.

Iran was invited to join BRICS on August 24 of the current year as part of a decision by the bloc to accept six new members.

Iran’s membership came nearly two months after it joined the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), a bloc also led by major economies like China, Russia and India.

Qalibaf made the remarks about BRICS PAY after attending a meeting of BRICS parliament speakers in South Africa, Press TV reported.

He said Iran’s access to the banking system would eliminate the need for access to SWIFT, a Belgium-based financial messaging system which has banned Iran from its services over the past years because of US sanctions imposed against the country.

The Iranian parliament speaker said China, Russia, India and South Africa account for some 30% share of Iran’s entire trade, adding that BRICS PAY would be a major boost to Iran’s efforts to maintain and increase its trade ties with the rest of the world.

He described the creation of the payment system as a major achievement for BRICS because it facilitates trade by reducing the need for access to Western-dominated systems like SWIFT.

A statement on BRICS PAY website says the system seeks to empower businesses and consumers within the bloc and beyond “to securely and seamlessly make and receive payments in their local currencies” while trying to “reduce the cost and complexity of the international payments”.

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