Japan continues to intensify efforts in its proposed central bank digital currency (CBDC) project as the country’s central bank has appointed its top economist to oversee the department conducting research on CBDC.
Japan Getting Serious With Proposed Digital Yen
According to Reuters on Friday (July 31, 2020), the Bank of Japan (BoJ) selected Kazushige Kamiyama, the bank’s top economist, to head the payments and settlement department. The department in collaboration with 6 other banks, is carrying out research efforts regarding CBDCs.
Kamiyama’s appointment comes on the heels of recent reports that the BoJ has decided to make digital currency research a “top priority”. Also, the Japanese central bank set up a new team to accelerate research into modalities and implications for issuing a digital yen.
Furthermore, the government is also looking at including digital currency in its 2020 economic plan. Meanwhile, the latest developments from Japan’s apex bank concerning CBDCs signal a different turn from the bank’s initial cautious attitude.
Japan’s increased interest in CBDCs is reportedly prompted by China’s digital currency efforts. Lawmakers have been urging the BoJ to consider issuing a digital yen to counter China’s digital yuan. Earlier in 2020, Japan’s finance minister warned that China’s CBDC project could adversely affect the stability of the global economy.
Notably, countries in the APAC region are in the lead when it comes to CBDCs, with China taking the number one spot in the region and globally. As reported by BTCManager recently, Cambodia was preparing to launch its Project Bakong in a few months.
Also, Thailand’s CBDC project is at the third stage, which will be tested by large businesses for transactions. Furthermore, South Korea has set up a legal advisory committee that will investigate any regulatory hurdles before issuing a CBDC. Meanwhile, the Philippines’ central bank is considering looking into issuing its CBDC.
CBDC Fever Still High
While the CBDC bandwagon has APAC countries in the majority, central banks of other countries outside Asia are also researching digital currency projects. The central bank of France released a list of successful applicants that will trial the bank’s CBDC project.
Also, some analysts from the Bank of Canada opined that among other characteristics, a CBDC should be made accessible. The Netherlands, on the other hand, expressed its desire to be the leading