Two leading banks in the UK and Australia, separated by 9,000 miles, have come together through a new whitepaper that discusses cautionary tales in the nationwide adoption of fintech innovation.
The two banks in question are NatWest and National Australia Bank (NAB), which have jointly authored a white paper exploring the common threads that bind both Australia’s consumer data right (CDR) and the UK’s open banking regime.
The whitepaper sets an agenda of the similarities in the policies that underpin both regimes, namely the ambition to increase competition and innovation and empower consumers to reclaim control over their data.
The authors also explore how the two nations have diverged in their journeys to implementing these frameworks, notably in relation to their respective scope in terms of ‘breadth versus depth’.
“By collaborating with NAB on this report we shared valuable lessons from the UK’s implementation of open banking, as well as our own experiences at NatWest of going above and beyond the mandate with the creation of our Bank of APIs ecosystem,” explains Claire Melling, head of bank of APIs at NatWest.
“We also have lessons to learn here in the UK from Australia’s approach to the CDR – especially in terms of the breadth of data access being implemented there,” adds Melling. “It’s important that the industry acts on this insight from Australia as we transition from open banking to open finance and smart data in the UK.”
A lot to learn
One of the report’s authors, NAB executive digital and data governance, Brad Carr, said there’s a lot to be learnt for both jurisdictions.
“Consumers are now looking for more integration and connection between the main experiences they have every day, and that means evolving from ‘open banking’ to ‘open data’,” Carr said.
“There are a number of insights and lessons we can glean from Australia and the UK’s journeys in relation to open banking and the CDR. It has been great to partner with our friends at NatWest on this report, as the UK was an early adopter of open banking and many other nations, including Australia, looked to the UK’s experience in developing their own regimes.”
In addition to this, Angela Mentis, NAB’s chief digital, data and analytics officer, said customers will be the beneficiaries of this convergence as the economy becomes increasingly digitised.
“We’re exploring ways we can utilise open banking to improve experiences and make things easier for our customers,” she explains.
“As an active data recipient, one of the areas we’re looking at is how open banking can help us enable instant credit decisions. Immediate decisioning will have a transformative effect on the customer experience and allow us to better support a customers’ financial wellbeing.”
The UK and the Australian regimes are now at a critical juncture of their respective development, with the UK looking beyond banking and finance to open data and Australia shifting focus to grow the adoption of the regime and support greater system functionality.
Several years on, is open banking in the UK and the CDR in Australia heading in the right direction? And are they moving quickly enough to be impactful in their respective economies?