One thing that has become very prominent on the global stage is the creation of Central Bank Digital Currencies (CBDCs) by various world powers. China, Canada, the Bahamas, the British Virgin Islands, and France are all at various stages of development and deployment of their own CBDCs. These days, the creation of a CBDC seems more like a requirement for economic survival for any country than simply a marker of innovation.
The latest of these developments comes from England which announced on April 19th, 2021 that it will be moving forward with the creation of its own CBDC.
England Gets its ‘Britcoin?
This news was announced via an official press release on the Bank of England website. According to the release, the Bank of England and Her Majesty’s treasury will be forming a task force to coordinate the exploration of a potential CBDC in the country. The proposed token would work alongside cash and bank deposits and will not work to replace them.
It should be noted that the English government and the Bank of England have not made a concrete decision about whether or not the token will be introduced but instead, is actively going to engage stakeholders and explore the potential risks and benefits of doing so.
The end goal of this task force will be to ensure that should the CBDC move forward, it will be done strategically. The goals of the task force will be to guide a possible evaluation of the design of the CBDC in order to achieve goals and also to engage in comprehensive assessments for potential cases for the CBDC. The task force will be co-chaired by Deputy Governor for Financial Stability at the Bank of England, Jon Cunliffe, and HM Treasury’s Director General of Financial Services, Katharine Braddick.
Besides this, there will also be the creation of a CBDC engagement forum which will engage stakeholders as well as gather information for the non-technological aspects of the proposed token. The goal of this forum is to determine whatever practical challenges might occur in implementing and designing the token such as its use cases, the role of the private sector, and the data and privacy implications.
There will also be the CBDC technology forum which will explore the technical aspects of the CBDC. Members of this forum will be curated from a number of fintech and academic institutions.