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Realizing Programmability in Payment and Settlement Systems

November 11, 2022
HOJO Masashi*, HATOGAI Junichiro
Payment and Settlement Systems Department

*Former Researcher at the Bank of Japan.

Programmability in payment and settlement systems refers to the ability of computer programs to control and automate system behavior when funds and securities circulate. If payment and settlement systems are equipped with a high level of programmability, it could enable the provision of highly convenient services in which funds are automatically transferred in response to trade and transactions without requiring users to perform complicated tasks. Programmability is a concept that is often discussed while tying in with technologies related to crypto-assets. However, if we focus on the feature that various entities can write programs and automatically move funds and assets, we can see that even existing payment and settlement systems have improved their programmability as they continue to upgrade their functions. In considering future payment and settlement systems, it is important to advance technological research while exploring approaches to enhance programmability, thereby working to realize payment and settlement methods appropriate for a digital society.


The Bank of Japan Review Series is published by the Bank to explain recent economic and financial topics for a wide range of readers. This report, 2022-E-8, is a translation of the Japanese original, 2022-J-12, published in June 2022. Views expressed are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of the Bank.

If you have any comments or questions, please contact FinTech Center, Payment and Settlement Systems Department (E-mail :