Ghana’s central bank is looking to launch a digital currency pilot in the coming months, according to a report.
The Bank of Ghana is reportedly working on a framework for the issuance of a central bank digital currency (CBDC), which would be used for interbank settlements and retail payments.
The pilot is expected to launch in the first quarter of 2019, and will involve a number of commercial banks and other financial institutions.
The central bank is said to be working with the Ghana Interbank Payment and Settlement Systems (GhIPSS) on the project.
GhIPSS is reportedly responsible for developing and operating Ghana’s national payment infrastructure, including the country’s real-time gross settlement system (RTGS).
The launch of a CBDC in Ghana would make it the first country in Africa to issue its own digital currency.
It would also be one of a handful of countries around the world to pilot a CBDC, along with China, Japan, Sweden and the Bahamas.
The Bank of Ghana’s move comes as central banks around the world are exploring the potential use of digital currencies.
While some have been cautious about the risks associated with CBDCs, others have been more open to the idea.
In September, the governor of the Bank of England, Mark Carney, said that a CBDC could one day replace the US dollar as the global reserve currency.
And in October, the governor of the People’s Bank of China, Yi Gang, said that the country was “closely watching” developments in CBDCs.
The launch of a CBDC in Ghana would be a significant development for the country’s payments landscape.
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