APSSS stands for Automated Payment and Securities Settlement System. APSSS is a system that connects all banks in a local network. It enables banks to provide customers with services to make electronic payments quickly, safely, and securely anywhere in Belize.

Major components of the system include:
  • an automated clearing house (ACH) for electronic clearing and settlement of retail payments, such as cheques, credit transfers and direct debits;
  • a real-time gross settlements system (RTGS) to enable large-value and time sensitive payments;
  • a central securities depository (CSD) to enable liquidity management, electronic auction, custody, and registry of ownership of government securities.

The Government's payments are fully integrated into the APSSS in order to improve collecting revenues (Customs, Income Tax and Sales Tax), making payments (payroll and accounts payable), and managing cash flows via a single treasury account (TSA).

What payment options are available with APSSS?

APSSS provides a wider range of payment options such as:

  • Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) for low-value payments (which includes bulk payments, such as payroll and accounts payable) within the same day,
  • Instant Funds Transfer (IFT) (an electronic payment that is available 24/7) within a few minutes,
  • Real-Time Gross Settlement (RTGS) for high value payments within an hour, and
  • Automated clearing and processing of cheques by the end of the next day.
What are the benefits of APSSS?

APSSS will have a positive impact on the efficiency of business processes of commercial banks and the way their customers effect payments and receive credit. The system and its new payment options will further expedite the flow of money, contributing to faster receipt of funds, and goods and services.

What is the Central Bank's role with APSSS?

The Central Bank functions as the operator and regulator of APSSS. The Central Bank is legally authorized to establish, oversee, and develop the national payment system in Belize. It contains systemic and other payment related risks to the system and provides secure and effective mechanisms for the exchange of money between transacting parties, domestically.

Can I use APSSS to send money abroad?
APSSS is a domestic system, meaning it is applicable only for money transfer within Belize.

Automated Clearing House (ACH)

What is ACH?
ACH stands for the Automated Clearing House. It is an electronic clearing system in which low-value payments and cheques are exchanged among financial institutions.
How does the ACH work?

ACH is a way to move money between banks electronically over a network. Anyone with access to a bank who wants to make a payment to someone who has a bank account can use this system.

For what purpose would I use the ACH?

ACH payments are simply funds transfers from one bank account to an account at another bank. Here are common uses for the ACH:

  • A customer pays for a service
  • An employer deposits money to an employee's account
  • A consumer moves funds from one bank to an account at another bank
  • A business or individual pays a supplier for products
How do I make an ACH Transaction?

If you want to make a payment, you need the beneficiary’s bank information and bank account number.

To receive payments in your bank account, you will need to provide your bank information and your bank account number to the payer.

With the ACH, you can choose to send a same-day Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) or an Instant Funds Transfer (IFT).

Ask your teller to send an EFT for low-value payments (under $50,000) and bulk payments, such as payroll and accounts payable. EFTs are processed within the same day. Payments will be made by the end of the day.

If you need to send a payment urgently, choose to send an IFT. An IFT is an electronic payment that is available 24/7. The payment will be processed within a few minutes.

Ask your bank if these options are available online.

How does the ACH benefit me?
It gives you new electronic payment options, where you can receive or send payments faster.
Is it safe to give out my bank account number?
To receive payments in your bank account, you will need to provide your bank account number to the payer. It is safe to give out your bank account number. Someone with your bank account number can only deposit funds into your bank account.
How Much Does it Cost?
Contact your bank for their fees to send an EFT or an IFT.

Real Time Gross Settlement (RTGS)

What is RTGS?

RTGS stands for Real Time Gross Settlement. The RTGS is an electronic form of funds transfer for high-value or time-sensitive payments, where money transfer takes place from one bank to another bank in real time and on an individual order basis. Interbank settlement happens throughout the day, rather than just at the end of the day.

What is the difference between ACH and RTGS?
The ACH processes low-value transactions. The RTGS processes high-value and time-sensitive transactions.
How can I use the RTGS?
Transfer of funds with RTGS is done for high-value or time-sensitive transactions.
How can I make an RTGS transaction?
You will need to know the name of the beneficiary, beneficiary's bank, and account number. The initiating bank will send instructions to the receiving bank, and the beneficiary account receives the funds transferred almost immediately. However, each transaction is subject to AML/CFT (Anti-Money Laundering / Combating the Financing of Terrorism) compliance checks.
Ask your bank for your online options.

Automated Cheque Processing (ACP)

What is ACP?
Automated Cheque Processing (ACP) is another component of the ACH that allows for faster cheque clearing. Paper cheques used to be processed manually, a process that took up to seven days to clear. With ACP, deposited cheques are cleared by the end of the next day if deposited by 2:00p.m.
How does ACP work?
With APSSS, you deposit your cheque just as normal. However, the clearing process is now automated. Banks receiving cheque deposits will create a digital image of the cheque, and send this image along with relevant information on the MICR band to the other bank for processing. The new process, called cheque truncation, will eliminate the need for further handling of the physical document, creating a more efficient way of processing cheques.
What are the benefits of ACP?
With APSSS, ACP benefits consumers by:
  • Making funds available faster;
  • Allowing quicker access to the digital image of their processed cheques; and
  • Detecting potential fraud sooner.
What do I need to know about cheques?

All of the information on a cheque is important, so make sure that bank tellers, payees, and check scanners can get the details they need. The correct date, payee name, amount in figure and in words, and signature are absolutely essential. Handle your cheques with care; do not fold or write in the MICR line area.

MICR Line: The magnetic ink character recognition technology uses a special ink to verify the cheques. Protect the MICR Line. This line serves to communicate information about your bank and bank account. These numbers are written with magnetic ink in a font that is easily read by computers. This makes cheque processing faster. It is important not to write in this area, as well as not to fold the cheques, which may interfere with the scanning of the cheques.

Central Securities Depository (CSD)

What is CSD?
CSD (Central Securities Depository) is another component of APSSS, which replaces the existing manual registry and processing at the Central Bank. The CSD enables the immediate settlement and delivery of securities that are auctioned with electronic evidence of ownership.
How does the CSD work?

The CSD:

  • Calculates and executes automatically interest and coupon payment events;
  • Offers early, partial or total redemption;
  • Allows access to Intraday Liquidity Management facilities;
  • Provides real-time interface with the ATS; and
  • Provides online enquiry facilities.