UK NFT Dropped Over Lack of Demand, Finance Minister Hunt Says

The Royal Mint was asked to create a digital token last year, when NFTs were much more popular.

AccessTimeIconMar 29, 2023 at 12:23 p.m. UTC
Updated Mar 29, 2023 at 4:58 p.m. UTC

The U.K. government wasn't convinced about the demand for a NFT issued by the Royal Mint, Finance Minister Jeremy Hunt said in a Treasury Committee meeting on Wednesday.

Last April, the Royal Mint was tasked by then-Finance Minister, now Prime Minister Rishi Sunak to create a non-fungible token, but on Monday, the government announced that it decided to drop the highly anticipated project.

"I think it's a question of demand," Hunt said. "I think we always want to be at the cutting edge in the U.K., in terms of new technology, but the world has changed significantly since then and we're not convinced that the demand is going to be there in the same way."

The NFT sector, which attracted lots of attention from celebrities and the media, peaked in January 2022 with $5 billion in global sales on some days, according to blockchain data tracker CryptoSlam. The most recent 24-hour sales data is just $44.3 million.

The U.K. government to this point has publicly been undeterred by the crypto winter, continuing to insist its crypto hub ambitions remain.

Edited by Stephen Alpher.


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Camomile Shumba

Camomile Shumba is a CoinDesk regulatory reporter based in the UK. She previously worked as an intern for Business Insider and Bloomberg News. She does not currently hold value in any digital currencies or projects.

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