Rahul is the Global Head of Payments Markets Infrastructure (PMI) Strategy at SWIFT, leading the application of SWIFT’s strategy towards the PMI business segment, driven to achieve instant and frictionless end-to-end transactions. This includes evolution of next stage PMIs (Instant Payments Systems, RTGS’, ACHs), removal of residual friction in PMI internationalisation, and exploring emerging areas of payments innovation like CBDCs, cross-border instant payments and PMI interlinkages. He has authored thought leadership on topics like CBDC interoperability and regional PMI integration, and has been a speaker, trainer & facilitator at regulatory & payments industry forums including Sibos, World Bank Global Payment Week, the Global Payment Summit, Singapore Fintech Festival, EMEAP, WC-PSS, SEACEN and WEF. He remains closely engaged on behalf of SWIFT with the central banking and PMI community on various industry initiatives, including the G20 initiative to enhance cross-border payments. 

In his previous career, Rahul has undertaken regional leadership roles with banking, payments, fintech and consulting firms, and worked extensively across Asia Pacific, the Middle East and Europe in diverse engagements. Prior to joining SWIFT in 2016, Rahul was Head of APAC Financial Services Practice and Strategic Projects for NTT Data, where he established the regional banking & payments practice and led strategic regional initiatives in APAC, including R&D projects. Previously, Rahul has played a lead role in core transformation programs for global banks as part of Accenture’s Financial Services practice and in Banking & Payments Product Management roles with FNIS, CSC.  

Rahul’s early career included Product Management for the online cross-border remittances portfolio of ICICI Bank (India’s largest private sector bank), and leading Retail Banking & Digital Channels program portfolio for the Royal Bank of Scotland in Dubai. 

Rahul has an MBA in Information Systems & Marketing, and a Bachelors in Economics. 

Rahul Bhargava
Head of Payments Market Infrastructure (PMI)