We need to reclassify mobile payments as electronic account to account payments that are independent of international borders.
Once this is done, mobile's role is simply as a new channel for the payment initiator complementing the web, the ATM (ABM), Call Centre and branch.
The real value of mobile is in the identification and communication with the intended beneficiary. To achieve this value:
1. By using the country code in front of the phone number, the mobile phone number becomes a global User ID
2. Anyone with a mobile phone can be communicated with via SMS
In the developed world, the mobile phone as a channel will be (already is) very popular with the smart phone users and a P2P payment service will merely become a menu choice. These countries tend to be the source of most international remittances whereas the developing countries, which are characterized by many unbanked individuals who currently own a mobile phone.
To be border independent, it is very important that standards be set surrounding both local and international P2P payments. In my opinion, this has already been done through the SWIFT Workers' Remittance message set.
The real value, and this is where SWIFT can provide significant value for all participating financial institutions (and potentially mobile carriers masquerading as banks), is in maintaining a global directory of mobile phone numbers with routing instructions to the financial institution of the intended recipient.
The challenge is that, should SWIFT maintain this directory physically, it would prove unwieldy. But what if it was new kind of directory... a directory that is dynamically maintained by the mobile user by virtue of their registration with their financial institution (or account holder)?