Oman to implement global IBAN banking system

29/04/24

Oman`s Central Bank (CBO) has announced it will introduce the International Bank Account Number (IBAN) standard enabling seamless local and international payments.

The banks initiative will modernise the Sultanate’s financial system and foster collaboration within the banking community. Furthermore, the new system will result in an efficient, transparent and globally connected banking system as IBAN is recognised worldwide to facilitate the identification of bank account numbers across national borders. The system is currently used in over 80 countries.

Commercial Bank Oman said the IBAN system will not replace existing sort code and account numbers. However it is an additional number with extra information to help overseas banks identify the right account for payments. As a result the key benefits are the faster processing times for both domestic and international payments, saving time for businesses and individuals alike.

Meanwhile CBO has outlined a phased implementation plan, with Phase 1 focusing on international remittances and scheduled for completion by the end of Quarter 1 2024. Phase 2 will encompass local transactions and will commence following the completion of Phase 1.

CBO stated that banks operating in Oman will be required to upgrade their systems to accommodate IBAN generation and processing. Moreover, they must conduct thorough testing and validation across all digital banking channels. Banks will also be responsible for raising awareness among their customers about the benefits of IBAN and providing online services for IBAN number generation and validation.

Oman’s IBAN standard will comprise two alpha country codes, two numeric check digits, a three-numeric bank identifier and a 16-numeric customer account number.

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