China and Russia are Stepping up Their CBDC Efforts

BlocDesk Russia China CBDC

A Central bank digital currencies, or CBDC, is still actively explored today. Various regions have shown a keen interest to explore this option. Efforts in Russia and China might be picking up steam, which is worth keeping tabs on. 

The Sberbank CBDC Plan

In Russia, the regulatory stance on virtual and digital currencies remains rather unclear. Numerous rumors have come out of the country as to how Bitcoin will be banned one time, yet trading will be officially regulated the next. There are simply too many conflicting opinions and rumors to effectively gauge the sentiment right now. 

One thing is certain right now: Sberbank wants to explore the CBDC option. Russia’s biggest bank has confirmed it wants to build a stablecoin on the Hyperledger blockchain.  While this is a viable option on paper, there are still a lot of questions waiting to be answered. 

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Based on the information shared with the public, the CBDC will be pegged to the Russian Ruble. Moreover, the new currency will be usable for settlements tied to digital financial assets. All of this information doesn’t mean that a stablecoin will be issued by Sberbank, however, The bank is merely exploring all options on the table. 

China Enters the Next Stage

It is a well-known fact that China is going all-in on blockchain technology. Companies are registering with the government at an accelerating pace. This has also paved the way for a Chinese CBDC. The country’s four state-owned commercial banks have already begun experimenting with this currency on a larger scale.

Most of this testing occurs internally. The digital yuan is coming closer to fruition, but there is still plenty of room for progress.  Stepping up the internal testing to a broader scale will help gather valuable feedback. This new stage of testing can still be accessed to residents in major cities. 

Users with the app can use this CBDC to top up accounts, make payments, and transfer money. One option being explored is giving users the option to transfer money without an internet connection. How that option will work exactly, has not been confirmed.

One aspect to keep an eye on is how china’s CBDC will affect the payment landscape. The country is home to major players, at least where mobile payments are concerned. Competing with those established companies will be interesting, but also pose a ton of challenges. The landscape in China will undergo some key changes in the coming years, by the look of things.