Nigeria, Chile and Tajikistan have taken major steps in their plans for central bank digital currencies (CBDCs), while mainland China, Hong Kong, Thailand and the United Arab Emirates explore the potential for CBDCs in cross-border payments.

Fast facts

  • The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has launched a website for eNaira, the country’s CBDC, which will have its rollout in a week and make Nigeria the first African country to launch a CBDC, according to CBN’s information technology director, Rakiya Mohammed. Nigeria banned crypto transactions within the banking sector in February, and sees CBDC as an effective means of providing better financial inclusion in developing countries, and combating crypto’s increasing popularity.
  • The Central Bank of Chile announced on Monday it will decide in early 2022 on a strategy for the potential rollout of its own digital currency, which had formed a working group for a plan to mint a “digital peso.” 
  • The Fantom Foundation announced on Monday it will develop a CBDC product for Tajikistan, working with OJSC Orienbank, one of the country’s oldest banks, making Fantom one of the first blockchain projects to develop a CBDC platform for a national government. The two will join the National Bank of Tajikistan in developing commercial and retail payment networks for a digitized Tajikistani somoni (E-SOM).
  • Institutions including the central banks of China, Hong Kong, Thailand and the United Arab Emirates published on Monday a report on the interim findings of the Multiple Central Bank Digital Currency Bridge (mBridge) project, which aims to develop a cross-border payment corridor network prototype. According to the report, the prototype has the potential to offer participating central banks the ability to manage the liquidity of their CBDC, monitor the flow and the balances of their issued CBDC, enhance the level of privacy of the transactions and automate certain compliance functions.