The Central Bank of Ghana is “in the advanced stages of introducing a digital currency,” Gov. Ernest Addison said during a press conference in Accra earlier this week.
The West African country boasts one of the first central banks on the continent to say it was working on a digital currency, looking at the concept of an e-cedi, Addison said.
“We are quite advanced in that process,” Addison said. “With these types of things, you have to go at it in phases and the first phase was really on the design of the electronic money and the team that has gone quite far in the design phase, they are looking at the implementation phase.”
The next will be a pilot “where a few people would be able to use the digital cedi on the mobile applications.” After that the bank will decide whether the incipient central bank digital currency (CBDC) is feasible and what needs to be tweaked, Addison told reporters.
In February, Ghana’s central bank partnered with Emtech, a digital transformation consortium, to launch a sandbox focused on areas like blockchain, CBDCs and financial inclusion.
During his speech, Addison warned against “unregulated” cryptocurrencies.
“I think there is a lot more emphasis on looking at digital money which is backed by the state, backed by the central banks. These private forms of money really are not able to perform the functions of money effectively,” he said.