The apex financial institution in the Kremlin, The Bank of Russia is on track to begin testing its Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC), locally known as the Digital Ruble, by 2022.
As reported by the local news channel, Prime, the plans were revealed by Deputy Chairman of the Central Bank Alexey Zabotkin who noted that the apex bank intends to present a prototype platform for the digital ruble by the end of the year and in 2022, to begin testing the workability of the platform.
Central Bank Digital Currencies are becoming commonplace amongst monetary authorities around the world as most aim to clampdown on the dominating influence of Bitcoin (BTC), and Stablecoins in their respective payment ecosystems. Russia proposed to explore the Digital Ruble back in October 2020 and has since been noted to be developing the best ways to achieve this.
“By the end of the year, hopefully, we will be able to present a prototype of the digital ruble platform – some technological platform that can be rotated in the hands, but within which it will not be possible to make real transactions yet. Next year, based on this prototype, taking into account its revision we will already be launching testing rounds,” he said, speaking at an online meeting organized by NES.
The Bank of Russia has no defined timeline to launch the Digital Ruble, but with an apparent focus on developing the infrastructures that back it up.
CBDCs And The Countries In The Lead
While the Bank for International Settlements (BIS) has confirmed that the majority of its members are considering or exploring the feasibility of debuting a CBDC, the strides of The Central Bank of the Bahamas and the People’s Bank of China, are particularly impressive.
In the Bahamas, the CBDC dubbed the Sand Dollars is already in circulation after being launched in October of last year. The country is even looking at collaborating with other nations in a bid to use its Sand Dollars for international transactions.
The People’s Bank of China is arguably the biggest economy aggressively driving the launch of its CBDC dubbed the Digital Currency Electronic Payment (DCEP). The PBoC has been involved in many trials in some of its key cities including Shenzhen. The private technology companies in China, Huawei Technologies Limited amongst the lot are helping the government in its bid to make the DCEP a reality.
Huawei integrated a wallet for the DCEP, also known as the Digital Yuan in its latest smartphone, the Huawei Mate 40. China has no set date to launch the Digital Yuan, but analysts believe the Asian giant is ready to go.