Wisps of smoke rise from the NPA chimney

When the world waits with bated breath

When the world waits with bated breath for the election of a new pope all eyes are fixed on a tiny chimney perched on the roof of the Sistine Chapel – everyone wondering whether they will see white smoke confirming that a new pope has been chosen or black smoke indicating that a new pope still has to be chosen.

For sometime payment geeks have been fixing their eyes on the “chimney” on top of Thomas More Square in London looking for news indicating that Pay.UK had chosen their infrastructure supplier for the proposed New Payments Architecture (NPA).

The genesis of the concept of a New Payments Architecture is becoming lost in the mists of time but a good starting point is probably the document “Payments Strategy for the 21st Century” published by the Payments Strategy Forum in November 2016 (yes, almost seven years ago).

Wisps of smoke rise from the NPA chimney

As of today (4 September 2023), after years of waiting, the wisps of smoke rising from the NPA “chimney” are………… still black!

NPA related news is fairly sparse at the moment but the August“Monthly Insights” from ACI Worldwide included a helpful update on the status of the renewal of the UK’s payment rails:

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