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The Reserve Bank of Australia revealed that it is continuing to study a central bank digital currency (CBDC), and less than a month earlier, it announced that it was unnecessary to use this currency.
The Reserve Bank of Australia also revealed that it is considering the possibility of a more targeted “wholesale” CBDC.
Tony Richards, Head of Payment Policy at the Reserve Bank of Australia, said at the Blockchain, Cryptocurrency and Fintech Conference at the University of Western Australia:
“We will continue to consider the reasons for launching CBDC, including its design method, potential benefits and policy impacts, and the potential for a large amount of demand for CBDC.”
Richards added that Australia still has to come up with a public policy justification to allow the issuance of general-purpose or retail CBDC. According to the report in mid-September, the Australian Bank was very skeptical and did not believe that there were strong policy reasons to issue CBDC at that time.
Richards added that although Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are based on public blockchains, CBDC is not necessarily the case. CBDC can be developed through a licensed centralized digital ledger.
Richards went on to say that the Reserve Bank of Australia is still studying factors such as whether it is account-based or token-based, and whether it can be used offline. These factors may help create a potential CBDC.
Richards also revealed that in addition to monitoring the retail CBDC, the central bank is also studying the impact of potential wholesale CBDC on technology and policies. Wholesale CBDC will be used by more limited financial entities.
Richards said that the Reserve Bank of Australia is open to CBDC and will continue to monitor developments in this area, adding:
“If certain jurisdictions do move towards full implementation of CBDC, there will be many central banks watching as closely as we do.”