Within the ESCB area

The Committee on Payment and Settlement Systems of the European Central Bank (ECB), aware of the importance of implementing secure and efficient payment systems, has promoted a framework to develop business continuity exercises.

These exercises have two specific characteristics: On the one hand, they must cover the industry as a whole (payments and securities); and on the other, they must be supranational.

Once the objectives are set in terms of participants, scenarios and duration, the exercises are conveniently prepared and run. Their assessment provides valuable information which is used to improve the business continuity framework.

These exercises contribute to furthering knowledge on the relevant interdependencies which exist in today's integrated financial world. Furthermore, they serve to fulfil the "Business continuity oversight expectations for systematically important payment systems", which deal with basic aspects such as validating the effectiveness of the business continuity strategy, familiarising staff with business continuity plans and conducting regular tests. Besides, it is considered "good practice" to carry out industry-wide exercises or those involving other systematically important payment systems, major participants, market infrastructures, authorities, critical service providers and other interconnected systems.