JCB, IDEMIA, Soft Space to CBDC pilot project

Monday 24 October 2022 10:53 CET | News

JCB has launched JCB Digital Currency (JCBDC), a pilot project developed in collaboration with IDEMIA, a digital identity provider, and Soft Space.

JCBDC pilot will develop a Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) payment solution and conduct a pilot test with Tokyo merchants.

JCB will have CBDC acceptance tested using existing JCB Contactless – JCB’s EMV-based contactless payment, merchants, POS terminals, and plastic card-based user interfaces, with guidance from IDEMIA and Soft Space.

JCB, IDEMIA, and Soft Space will conclude payment system development by late 2022 and conduct the pilot test with Tokyo merchants until March 2023.

This project aims to prove that existing payment acceptance hardware can be used for new CBDC payment systems, which is a benefit for both consumers and merchants.

JCB will focus on aspects as whether a CBDC could be used for daily touch payments. One test case will be at restaurants in Tokyo. Company employees will make purchases to see if the infrastructure is reliable in a commonly used scenario. The goal is to test if a CBDC could be used for settlement within existing credit card systems.

Japan’s developments on CBDC

In December 2020, Japan was announcing it is preparing for the issuance of digital currency in both the public and private sectors, following swift moves by China and other countries to do the same.

JCB launches JCB Digital Currency (JCBDC), a pilot project developed in collaboration with IDEMIA, a digital identity provider, and Soft Space.

The Digital Currency Forum’s plans were to start a feasibility study for its virtual currency in 2021, aiming at bridging the various existing cashless payment services and boosting interoperability by offering their ‘common’ digital currency.

However, in August 2022, the Bank of Japan (BoJ) has announced it will be abandoning its planned host of CBDC services due to a reported lack of public interest. After checking for the technical feasibility of shifting towards CBDC from fiat currencies, the BoJ reportedly saw no need to implement such a change in the near future. The still ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has driven the traditionally cash-reliant country toward other forms of money transfer, which include e-money payment tools, credit cards, and digital banking services. These can be easily accessed by the Japanese.

CBDC around the world

Over the past few years, central banks in many countries and regions have been testing CBDCs that should soon be widely accepted by consumers and merchants. However, merchants might be reluctant to accept them, and mass-market rollout may be held up by people without smartphones, like children and the elderly, who could find the user interfaces and payment systems hugely challenging.

As an example, in October 2022, financial messaging system SWIFT has laid out its blueprint for a global CBDC network following an eight-month experiment on different technologies and currencies. The trial has involved both France and Germany's national central banks as well as global lenders like HSBC, Standard Chartered, and UBS.

Around 90% of the world's central banks are now using, trialling, or looking into CBDCs. Most don't want to be left behind by Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies but are grappling with technological complexities. The trial will be followed by more advanced testing over 2023.

To find more information about IDEMIA, check their profile in our company database.

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Keywords: product launch, partnership, CBDC, payments , digital identity
Categories: DeFi & Crypto & Web3
Companies: IDEMIA, JCB, Soft Space
Countries: Japan
This article is part of category

DeFi & Crypto & Web3





Soft Space

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