The digital rouble could help Russia bypass the SWIFT banking payment system

Thursday 3 June 2021 09:19 CET | News

Russia’s central bank governor, Elvira Nabiullina, has said for CNBC that digital currencies will be the future of financial systems, as the economy moves online.

There is a need for fast, cheap payment systems, and central bank digital currencies can fill that gap, she told CNBC in an exclusive interview. Moscow published a consultation paper on a digital rouble in October 2020 and aims to have a prototype ready by the end of 2021. Pilots and trials could start next year, Nabiullina said.

The governor also weighed in on US sanctions, which she described as a ‘persistent risk’ for Russia. Washington has imposed sanctions on Russia for varying reasons over the years, from suspected poisoning of opposition politicians, to alleged election interference and cyberattacks.

The possibility of countries like Russia, China, and Iran to create a central bank digital currency to operate outside of the dollar, could be a concern for the US, according to a former US Treasury official, Michael Greenwald. The danger could increase if other countries followed them.

According to the online publication, Russia has been gradually inching away from using the US dollar to insulate itself from the effects of sanctions that are able to target all companies using the currency. All in all, China, Russia, and the European Union have strong ‘motivation to de-dollarise’, Russia’s central bank governor concluded.

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Keywords: CBDC, digital currency, SWIFT, cybersecurity, central bank
Categories: Banking & Fintech
Countries: Russian Federation
This article is part of category

Banking & Fintech