TARGET2 - an integrated Europe for individual payments
Trans-European Automated Real-time Gross settlement Express Transfer system
TARGET stands for Trans-European Automated Real-time Gross settlement Express Transfer system and is the settlement system used by Eurosystem central banks for urgent, real-time transfers. TARGET went live on 4 January 1999 when the euro was introduced. It is owned by the Eurosystem, ie the ECB and the national central banks of the euro area. It is a network of, in some cases, fairly different RTGS systems. After a six-month migration phase, this network was replaced by TARGET2, a system operated on a single shared platform, on 19 May 2008.
The Bundesbank migrated its national banking community to TARGET2 on the launch date of 19 November 2007. TARGET2 offers all participants a completely harmonised range of services. At the same time, the responsible central banks remain in charge of individual customer services. Furthermore, from a legal perspective, the TARGET2 system retains its multiple-layer structure, meaning that each central bank is regarded as a separate system operator. The German system is called TARGET2-Bundesbank.