BIS Plans Platform for Testing Central Bank Digital Currencies in Cross-Border Payments

The new platform was announced as part of the BIS Innovation Hub's priorities and programs for 2021.

Jan 22, 2021 at 2:48 p.m. UTC
Updated Sep 14, 2021 at 11:00 a.m. UTC

The Bank of International Settlements (BIS) Innovation Hub listed its priorities and programs for 2021 Friday, among which will be a new platform for testing wholesale central bank digital currencies (CBDCs).

  • BIS said the "proof of concept" platform will use multiple CBDCs "to explore the feasibility of faster and cheaper cross-border payments."
  • CBDCs were also listed as one of six "thematic priorities" for the year, alongside suptech and regtech, open finance, green finance, cybersecurity and next-generation financial market infrastructures.
  • Projects will be carried out across the three Innovation Hub Centres in Hong Kong, Singapore and Switzerland, as well as new centers planned for this year.
  • BIS has also just launched the “Innovation Network,” which will allow its 63 member central banks to share knowledge about technology projects such as CBDCs and discuss any related issues.
  • The new programs are aimed to builds collaboration around financial technology among the world's central banks.
  • “This work [program] shows our commitment to exploring in the most practical ways how best to harness technological change for the benefit of central banks and create public goods to support the global financial system,” said Benoit Coeure, head of the BIS Innovation Hub.
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