Jamaica completes first CBDC pilot

Tuesday 4 January 2022 10:21 CET | News

The Jamaican central bank has completed the pilot testing of its central bank digital currency, with the participation of only one payment service provider.
The claim by the Bank of Jamaica (BOJ) follows the completion of an eight-month test run that commenced in May 2021. In March 2021, BOJ announced that it was testing a prototype central bank digital currency with vendor eCurrency in BOJ’s Fintech Regulatory Sandbox. This was followed in May 2021 by the commencement of an 8-month long pilot which ends today, 31 December 2021.

The scope of the CBDC pilot was limited to wallet providers who indicated their readiness to participate within the scheduled timeframe. National Commercial Bank [NCB] based on the extent of their experience in the Sandbox came onboard with BOJ to test the range of services to be offered using the CBDC solution.

The statement also explains that the success of the pilot project had been dependent on whether a CBDC along with the attendant technology solution could be successfully implemented in Jamaica. Three activities were completed during the pilot phase. The first of these activities was the minting of USD 230 million worth of CBDC to be issued to deposit-taking institutions and authorised payment service providers. A day after minting the digital currency on 9 August 2021, the BOJ went on to issue USD 1 million worth of CBDC which was distributed to the bank’s staff.

Next, on 29 October 2021, about USD 5 million worth of the CBDC was issued to NCB and this marked the first issuance of a CBDC to a deposit-taking institution in Jamaica. After receiving the digital currency, NCB then onboarded 57 customers which included 4 small merchants and 53 consumers.

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Keywords: CBDC, central bank, digital currency, cryptocurrency
Categories: Banking & Fintech
Companies: Bank of Jamaica
Countries: Jamaica
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Bank of Jamaica

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