Central Bank of Oman (CBO) has launched a new national ATM/POS Switch on ACI Worldwide's BASE24-eps payments engine.

ACI said that creating Oman’s national switch has been a major project for the Central Bank of Oman, which involved consolidating two previously-independent switches, as well as ensuring all financial institutions in the country can communicate with and send and receive transactions from the central switch.

The CBO used ACI Simulation Services for Enterprise Testing for the testing and certification of all the country’s financial institutions to ensure they can interact with the central switch.

With the national ATM/POS Switch, it is expected to handle monthly volumes of approximately 5 million ATM and POS transactions, and it can handle transactions from EMV and non-EMV cards.

The project will also give Oman the ability to link directly with all the GCC Net switches, of the Gulf Cooperation Council countries, instead of a single link through the member country switches. This means ATM transactions can be routed directly between GCC countries without going out to the wider card networks.

ACI Worldwide president of global markets and services Ralph Dangelmaier said BASE24-eps gives the country a solid platform for future development of e-payment services, and features such as its multi-currency and multi-institution support are already being embraced by CBO. This project has been delivered successfully as a partnership between CBO, ACI, HP and IMTAC.