A guide to understanding the different types of payments and agreements

4 min reading
A guide to understanding the different types of payments and agreements
A guide to understanding the different types of payments and agreements


Electronic transactions are an increasingly more common banking medium in Mexico. They emerged as an option to make transfers from anywhere and any device, so that users did not have to go to physical branches to make their payments.

The Bank of Mexico launched the SPEI payment system and CIE agreements a few years ago to facilitate the exchange of money between individuals and to provide more information in business transactions between companies. We tell you what they consist of, what they are used for, and how banking APIs can help improve processes in companies’ cash flow.

SPEI and SPID: Payment systems in Mexico

There are two payment systems in Mexico: the SPEI, which is used only for money exchanges in Mexican pesos, and the SPID, for U.S. dollars.


The Interbank Electronic Payment System (SPEI) is a real-time settlement system that allows transfers between accounts of different banks in the national currency, the Mexican peso. It began operations on August 13, 2004 and uses an open protocol (i.e. public rules of communication with the system) that allows participants to automate their transfers and thus provide more and better services to their customers.

Over the years, the SPEI has become increasingly more popular. According to data from the Bank of Mexico, in 2019, about 850 million transactions were carried out for a total amount of 396 trillion pesos (about USD 19 million). To put this data in perspective, this figure represents a 40% increase YoY.


The Interbank Dollar Payment System (SPID) is similar to the SPEI, with the difference that it allows electronic transfers between bank accounts in dollars. It was created to cover transfers in this currency, an increasingly common type of transaction in Mexico.

Like the SPEI, the SPID has also experienced remarkable growth in recent years, the result of increased dollar use in commercial transactions. In 2019, there were 2,653,000 transactions in this currency for a total amount of USD 209,207 million, according to data from the Bank of Mexico.

Deposits with a CIE reference

CIE deposits (Spanish acronym for Immediate Business Concentration), or CIE agreements, are a service for receipt of payments with a reference. Users of this service are assigned an exclusive CIE agreement number, which is associated with their bank account identified through their Standardized Banking Key (CLABE system, a banking rule for the numbering of bank accounts in Mexico). This number can be used to receive payments automatically and with a reference.

Thus, users can quickly identify who made the payment as well as the transaction/operation in question, using a field called reference or description. There are two types of CIE agreements:

Advantages of CIE agreements

For Mexican companies, CIE agreements have become an essential type of banking service in their business transactions thanks to their multiple advantages. Here are some examples:

Why use an API to integrate payments into your platform?

Guía para comprender pagos y convenios en México

Electronic transactions through SPEI and CIE deposits are increasingly accepted between Mexican individual users and companies. Banking APIs are giving them additional impetus, facilitating the integration of banking infrastructure into business platforms.

There are countless reasons for using APIs to facilitate electronic money exchanges.

Automation of cash-flow tasks

As we have already seen, CIE agreements help automate certain accounting tasks such as bank reconciliation. Since CIEs carry customer and payment (or invoice) data, transactions can be seamlessly integrated into the cash-flow system so that banking information is automatically reflected in business accounting.

APIs facilitate the integration of all bank transfer information with the company’s ERP or accounting system to keep information up-to-date in real time, ensuring better cash-flow forecasting and helping to reduce operating costs and human involvement.

More possibilities for your customers

APIs help improve your customers’ experience. Without leaving your environment (app, website or directly in your own ERP), your customers can request sums to be withdrawn, set by you or by them, that will be deducted from their wallets. In addition, it allows you to offer your users the automated payment of the funds you owe them.

Managing payments with your suppliers

You no longer need to reach agreements with multiple partners separately. With automated CIE payment, you can make and manage multiple payments to suppliers almost immediately.

Payments will be transferred from the account you choose and you will always know who, when, and how.

Most up-to-date information

APIs ensure that banking information flows in real time, allowing you to get a more up-to-date view of the company’s cash flow. This leads to greater control of liquidity, and better decision-making in the future, among other benefits.

This is also an advantage for your customers and suppliers, since they can confirm in real time the payment of transactions through CIE agreements.

Business Payments, BBVA’s API for managing your CIE payments and agreements

BBVA’s Business Payments API is one of the APIs that allows you to manage CIE deposits and SPEI transfers, a tool available at BBVA API Market. You can use it to integrate banking information within your website, app or ERP. Its features are as follows:

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