PRESS RELEASE

The European Central Bank invites the market to participate in the SWIFT public consultation on removing technical barriers to market integration

5 January 2005

Today SWIFT has launched a public consultation on the possibility of developing a common communication protocol in the European Union for securities infrastructure, with a view to eliminating those obstacles to market integration referred to as Barrier 1, identified in the Giovannini Group report on market integration.

The European Central Bank (ECB) supports this initiative and invites market participants to contribute actively to it. The aim of the initiative is going in the same direction as the aim of the work carried out by the ESCB-CESR Working Group on Standards for Securities Clearing and Settlement Systems in the European Union (Standard 16 on communication procedures, messaging standards and straight-through processing).

The consultation document can be found on SWIFT’s website: http://www.swift.com/

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