Many countries are making progress in their CBDC research, the Bank for International Settlements reports.
Central bank digital currencies (CBDCs) are now entering „advanced stages“ as countries around the world seek to capitalize on blockchain technology, according to a report by the Bank for International Settlements.
In its latest survey on the development of CBDCs, the BIS shows that central banks, representing roughly one fifth of the world’s population, will be launching a generalized Immediate Bitcoin in the next three years.
The 23-page document is based on initial consultations with more than 60 monetary authorities that took place in late 2020
The survey shows that 86 percent of central banks around the world are actively researching CBDCs. The majority are unlikely to be issuing digital currency in the foreseeable future, but a sizable minority is making progress in this regard.
Around 60 percent of central banks are experimenting with digital currencies. 14 percent are driving development and running pilot programs.
„All over the world, interest in CBDCs continues to be shaped by local conditions,“ say the authors Codruta Boar and Andreas Wherli. „In emerging and developing countries, where central banks have relatively stronger motivations, the goals of CBDCs are financial inclusion and payment efficiency.“
The US central bank is also actively researching CBDCs. The US Federal Reserve’s economists research what is known as the „intrinsic value“ of the digital dollar and have published several research reports on the subject.
The BIS authors conclude:
„Most central banks are now investigating a possible introduction of CBDCs in some way. Overall, the survey shows a continuous transition from purely conceptual research to experiments and pilot projects. But despite these developments, widespread introduction of CBDCs still seems a long way off.“
Commenting on the report, BIS Director General Agustin Carstens said that CBDCs „can serve as a basis for well-functioning payment transactions“ but only if they are accompanied by „good law enforcement“. Anonymous tokens „just don’t work,“ he said.
Carsten explained that unrelated CBDCs would create money laundering concerns, undermine efforts to promote financial inclusion and contribute to cross-border instability.
He further stated:
„If properly designed and widely accepted, CBDCs could become a complementary means of payment targeting specific use cases and market failures. They could act as a catalyst for further innovation and competition in payments, finance and commerce as a whole.“
The BIS, which is known as the „bank of the central banks“, promotes currency and financial stability as well as international cooperation between central banks worldwide. The bank was founded in 1930 and is headquartered in the Swiss city of Basel. Over the decades, its mandate has expanded to include emergency funding for troubled governments.
As Cointelegraph reported last week, the BIS is currently working on a CBDC settlement platform . The first experiments are to begin this year.