Fantom to Work With Orienbank to Help Develop a Possible CBDC for Tajikistan

The Fantom Foundation will work with OJSC Orienbank on a possible CBDC for use in the central Asian country.

Sep 27, 2021 at 3:45 p.m. UTC
Updated Sep 28, 2021 at 4:08 p.m. UTC

A proposed central bank digital currency (CBDC) platform for the central Asian country of Tajikistan will be built on the Fantom blockchain, the foundation behind the blockchain said Monday.

  • The Fantom Foundation will work with OJSC Orienbank, one of the oldest banks in Tajikistan, on a possible CBDC product to be evaluated by the country’s central bank.
  • The agreement makes Fantom one of the first blockchain projects to begin development of a CBDC platform for possible use by a national government, the foundation said.
  • Once completed, the proposed CBDC would undergo testing and refinement, Fantom said. Following trials, both companies will seek central bank approval to roll out the product nationally.
  • Orienbank and Fantom will join to develop commercial and retail payment networks for a digitized Tajikistani somoni (E-SOM).
  • While Fantom said the product is being developed under the central bank’s regulatory “sandbox” regulation, a type of environment that typically allows companies to experiment safely while creating CBDC models, the National Bank of Tajikistan made it clear that it has no agreement with Fantom.
  • “The National Bank of Tajikistan informs that it has not signed any cooperation agreement with Fantom Foundation on Digital Currency Platform (CBDC) and has no intentions to do so,” the central bank said in its statement.
  • While almost every major economy in the world has demonstrated an intent to explore the potentials of a CBDC, developing nations such as Tajikistan may find more use cases for them because of their potential to reduce costs of remittances.
  • Remittance inflows to Tajikistan made up 26% of the country’s gross domestic product last year, according to data from the World Bank.

CORRECTION (Sept. 28, 16:07 UTC): Makes it clear that Fantom will be collaborating on a proposed CBDC platform and product, and doesn’t have an agreement with the central bank on an actual product. Adds central bank statement.

DISCLOSURE

The leader in news and information on cryptocurrency, digital assets and the future of money, CoinDesk is a media outlet that strives for the highest journalistic standards and abides by a strict set of editorial policies. CoinDesk is an independent operating subsidiary of Digital Currency Group, which invests in cryptocurrencies and blockchain startups.

Jamie Crawley is a CoinDesk news reporter based in London.