As part of DC Fintech Week, a digital conference on the fintech government side, several international leaders gathered on October 19 for a panel entitled: Central Banks, CBDCs, and Cryptoeconomics.
“I do not see technological barriers in this area, but I do see technological challenges,” said Cecilia Skingsley, Senior Vice Governor of the Riksbank, Riksbank.
“The problem is not so much the technology itself, but the fact that we have to choose the political goals we want to focus on and the problem we want to solve,” she explained. “Depending on what it is and what purpose we want to serve it, technology chooses.”
The session included discussions between four separate bodies on various aspects of CBD, including the global race for such a coin, as well as barriers. In addition to Skinsley, the session was attended by BIS Executive Committee Member Benoit Coeur, Bank of England Vice Governor John Cunliffe, and former CFTC Chairman J. Christopher Giancarlo
For the Bank of England, Cunliffe explained that cash is a big part of the economy. “The criticism is no longer appropriate,” he said. “People are becoming increasingly uncomfortable using it in everyday life, and the COIVD crisis has accelerated this,” he added. “On the other hand, and for the same reasons, merchants are becoming less and less accepting, even to those who can accept cash.”
Giancarlo highlighted the competitive atmosphere surrounding the launch of the CBDC and said that winning the race was not the most important thing – a view recently expressed by US Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell.
“If there is a winner, I do not think the winner will necessarily be the first, and the loser will necessarily be the last,” Giancarlo said during the session. He explained that “what matters is any central bank that succeeds in implementing its social values for the successful development of the central bank’s digital currencies.” “On the other hand, it can not be too late to play here,” he added.
Referring to the BIS report from January 2020, Coehr reminded the public that a large number of central banks around the world consider central banks’ digital currency to be a valuable study. China has made great strides in developing digital central bank currencies by 2020.