Mastercard Launches Prepaid Card for World's First CBDC in Bahamas

The Bahamian Sand Dollar can now be used for payments anywhere Mastercard is accepted.

Feb 17, 2021 at 3:22 p.m. UTC
Updated Sep 14, 2021 at 12:12 p.m. UTC

People in the Bahamas now have the option of loading the country's central bank digital currency (CBDC) onto a prepaid Mastercard to enable use anywhere in the world, the payments giant has announced.

  • The Bahamas Sand Dollar, the world's first CBDC, can now be converted into traditional Bahamian dollars using a prepaid Mastercard, enabling users to pay for goods and services wherever Mastercard is accepted worldwide.
  • Since deployment in October 2020, the Sand Dollar has been accessed exclusively through a digital app at select merchants.
  • The CBDC aims to spur financial inclusion by addressing the expense and difficulty of moving cash between the Bahamas' 700 small islands.
  • The Mastercard development will also open the Sand Dollar to more users, as it has previously only been available to individuals and businesses domiciled in the Bahamas.
  • The Sand Dollar carries the same value as the Bahamian dollar, itself pegged to the U.S. dollar.
The Festival for the Decentralized World
Thursday - Sunday, June 9-12, 2022
Austin, Texas
Save a Seat Now

DISCLOSURE

Please note that our privacy policy, terms of use, cookies, and do not sell my personal information has been updated.

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.

Trending

1
Grayscale Investments to List Its First ETF in Europe

The Grayscale Future of Finance exchange-traded fund will list on the London Stock Exchange, Deutsche Börse and Borsa Italiana.

The Grayscale Future of Finance exchange-traded fund will list on the London Stock Exchange, Deutsche Börse and Borsa Italiana.

2
Indian Central Bank Says Cryptos Could Lead to "Dollarization" of Economy: Report

RBI officials said cryptocurrencies could undermine the central bank's capacity to regulate flow of money.

RBI officials said cryptocurrencies could undermine the central bank's capacity to regulate flow of money.

3
Nigeria’s SEC Affirms All Digital Assets Are Securities in New Rulebook

Rules look to clarify crypto’s role in the economy by providing a regulatory framework.

Rules look to clarify crypto’s role in the economy by providing a regulatory framework.

4
First Mover Asia: Singapore’s Regulators Will Be Eyeing Local Crypto Companies After Terra Collapse; Bitcoin Rebounds

Terraform Labs, the Singapore-registered company behind the Terra protocol, doesn’t have a permanent office in the city-state; most major cryptos spent Sunday in the green.

Terraform Labs, the Singapore-registered company behind the Terra protocol, doesn’t have a permanent office in the city-state; most major cryptos spent Sunday in the green.