Payment Systems & Modernization in Canada

Canada is the second largest country in the world by total area, with a population of 38 million approximately, as per Q2, 2020 census. Operating across 6 primary time zones, the consumer and business transactions constitute a total of 21.1 billion by volume and CA$ 9.9 trillion by value, for the year 2018, as per Payments Canada Association. The value is approximately 4 times the GDP of Canada in 2018, i.e. CA$ 2.39 trillion.

Payments Canada, which was officially established as Payments Canada Association in 1980, is the key body to establish and operate Payment Clearing and Settlement systems in Canada, viz. the Automated Clearing Settlement System (ACSS) and the Large Value Transfer System (LVTS). With the growing new technologies, the customer demands and increased international competition, Payments Canada had initiated modernization of existing Canadian Payment Systems.

With an aim to accelerate the economy of Canada, modernization of Canadian Payment Systems is one of the key initiates, which will benefit the Canadian financial institutions, other payment Service providers, businesses and consumers. Introduction of faster, safer and data-rich payments will boost the payments digitization which will further improve the bottom lines and lowers the operational costs. The Roadmap depicts the progress and the tentative time-lines for the completion of a new and modern Canadian Payment Systems.

This paper contains detailed information about the current payment systems in Canada and how they function, viz,

  • Automated Clearing Settlement System (ACSS)
  • Large Value Transfer System (LVTS)
  • Interac
  • US Dollar Bulk Exchange (USBE) system

After reading the paper, you will also understand about the proprietary message format, Standard 005, used for files exchange between ACSS participants, ISO 20022 message portfolios used by Payments Canada, Electronic Data Interchange (EDI), direct & indirect clearing and much more.

You can download the complete paper in the link provided below.


Thank you Srikanth Nadakuduru for the outstanding work.


  1. Hi Srikanth. Your paper is very nicely structured and very lucid. It will be very useful for anyone doing a Payments Project Imple as a basic reference Doc. It reflects your interest in Payments domain and also your excellent knowledge. Keep the good work going


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