CBDC Development Necessary for US to Remain Competitive, says Congressman
U.S. Rep. Jim Himes joined CoinDesk TV’s “First Mover” live from I.D.E.A.S. 2022 in New York City to discuss why the U.S. should consider moving forward with a central bank digital currency.
In an effort to remain a competitive player in the world of digital assets, the U.S. should look to push forward with the development of a central bank digital currency (CBDC) pilot, said U.S. Rep. Jim Himes (D-Conn.).
Himes told CoinDesk TV’s “First Mover” the U.S. should continue to work on a CBDC so that if and when the time comes “we’ve got the option to move forward if we need to.”
“Why would you exit the game before you even know what the game is going to look like?” Himes said. “We could do the research. We could set up a pilot program for a CBDC.”
Rep. Himes is a speaker at Investing in Digital Enterprises and Assets Summit (I.D.E.A.S.), CoinDesk's newest event revealing the most scalable marketplaces in the digital economy that will attract institutional capital in the years to come.
“We could shut it down,” said Himes, noting that the possibility that a CBDC will never be adopted in the U.S. “But the point is, since it is a technological innovation why not keep up with our peers, with our competitors and see where it goes.”
Himes – who currently serves on the House Financial Services Committee’s Subcommittee on National Security, International Development and Monetary Policy – said his support for a U.S.-based CBDC pilot project falls on the notion that he doesn’t want the U.S. to “get left behind,” and added that there is likely a market for CBDCs that appeal to certain populations.
“Why not build a CBDC platform upon which innovators could build payment systems, remittances [and] businesses,” Himes said. “It could serve as the platform for private sector innovation.”
Currently, said Himes, the U.S. is “nowhere” on the development of a CBDC project. A “huge political decision” needs to be resolved between lawmakers before any progress can be made, he added.
“If we were serious about it, we could move it pretty quickly,” said Himes. “We can do a lot of the setup before we actually push the button and say, ‘Hey, there's now a CBDC,’” Himes said.
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. As part of their compensation, certain CoinDesk employees, including editorial employees, may receive exposure to DCG equity in the form of stock appreciation rights, which vest over a multi-year period. CoinDesk journalists are not allowed to purchase stock outright in DCG.
Learn more about Consensus 2024, CoinDesk’s longest-running and most influential event that brings together all sides of crypto, blockchain and Web3. Head to consensus.coindesk.com to register and buy your pass now.