BRIDGETOWN, Barbados, Monday January 23, 2012 - Caribbean Integrated Financial Services, know as CarIFS, continues to provide a world class financial service to every Barbadian. So says Mike Parris, Director of Prism Services Inc. which manages and operates the island’s National debit network.
Created over 11 years ago, the CarIFS financial network has made Barbados more productive bringing huge National gains to the Barbadian economy, Parris said. When we created the service in June 1999, Bajans wasted millions of unproductive hours queuing to receive and access their money. Today, he said, most companies now pay staff through direct bank transfer, allowing individuals to draw wages directly from ATMs or purchase goods at CarIFS merchant terminals outside of banking hours and irrespective of an individual’s bank.
Barbadians can access their money, more securely, quicker and more conveniently any time of day or night Parris said, this is a real “National Treasure”. CarIFS has successfully created domestic savings for the country in the financial arena equivalent to those time savings gained if we could remove all the waiting time associated with round-abouts, stop lights, restricted passing zones and road works on our roads today. He said, consider how much more efficient Barbados could be if we were able to remove the impediments on our road system as we have been able to achieve on our financial systems. “It’s worth millions”, he said.
Barbadians can access their money, more securely, quicker and more conveniently any time of day or night. The CarIFS network was conceived and created by Bajans. It sustains 20 local jobs and conforms to and exceeds world financial standards being audited by international banks, financial institutions and The Central Bank of Barbados. Since 1999, CarIFS has maintained 100% uptime even in the face of hurricanes, power failures or telecommunications glitches. This has ensured confidence in Bajans with last year recognising 15% increase in activity for 71% of the local households.
Parris said, in 2011, the country transacted over Bds$319 Million from personal accounts across 3 million CarIFS transactions. He said this represents about 1,300 time-saving secure transactions in every productive hour of the year.
As international brands like Visa debit start to appear on the local scene, Parris drew note to cardholders and merchants that the use of CarIFS continues to foster huge national savings, reduced cost, keeps locals employed and stem foreign exchange outflows for processing services. CarIFS links to all retail banks in Barbados including the Barbados Public Workers Cooperative Credit Union and The City of Bridgetown Credit Union thus providing access to 90% coverage for local convenience.