Lately, apart from attempting to regulate the digital currency and blockchain markets, governments throughout the world are actively looking for ways to get a slice of the crypto cake. So far, the effort has mostly taken the shape of central bank-backed digital currencies.
As such, numerous countries have announced commencement of work on their very own CBDC projects. Pakistan represents one of the latest examples, since the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP), has stated that they’re planning to launch a CBDC by the year of 2025.
According to the bank’s deputy governor, Jameel Ahmad, there are several arguments promoting the CBDC project, including “promoting financial inclusion and reducing inefficiency and corruption.” The CBDC is also needed to help the SBP achieve its long-term goal of becoming a fully digitized financial services bank. According to the country’s finance minister, projects like this are bound to offer society numerous benefits. His press statement notes that: “It is our government’s policy to encourage the use of e-commerce amongst the public through awareness campaigns for promoting a culture of e-commerce that supports electronic business transactions at national, regional and international levels.”
So far, no additional information referring to who will work on the CBDC’s development have been released by the central bank, or the finance ministry. Pakistan will likely sort these aspects out in the short-term future.
The announcement comes following a series of new regulations adopted by the central bank, targeting digital currencies, and electronic money institutions (which now include crypto-based companies). The new regulatory framework requires crypto firms to fulfil a series of requirements, in order to receive operation licenses from the country’s financial regulator. In case these guidelines aren’t strictly followed, fintech firms face activity suspension, or a full cancellation of their operation licenses.
In a press statement following the vote on the new regulations, the State Bank of Pakistan mentioned that electronic money institutions, following the newly-adopted rules, will end up offering more “convenient, cost effective, interoperable and secure digital payment products and services to end users.”
Based on everything that has been outlined so far, after this announcement, Pakistan becomes yet another country working on a central bank digital currency. It will be certainly interesting to see how this trend evolves in the future, and whether centralized cryptocurrencies will become a serious competitor against decentralized digital currencies.
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