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India’s RBI Takes Cautious Approach: No Set Date for CBDC Launch

India's RBI Takes Cautious Approach No Set Date for CBDC Launch

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has not set a specific target date for the widespread implementation of the central bank digital currency (CBDC). RBI Governor Shaktikanta Das emphasized the importance of ensuring the safety and efficiency of the currency before a full-scale rollout.

Speaking at the World Economic Forum Annual Meetings 2024 in Davos on January 18, Das stated, “We have no target date, we are not in undue hurry or rush to implement it full scale because after all it is currency, its safety, integrity, and efficiency has to be ensured.”

Das highlighted that the ongoing pilot project for CBDC is essentially a learning process. In the retail mode, approximately 4 million users and 0.4 million merchants have been onboarded. The wholesale pilot of CBDC, initiated on November 1, focuses on settling trades of government securities (G-Secs) using the digital rupee.

Nine banks, including State Bank of India, Bank of Baroda, Union Bank of India, HDFC Bank, ICICI Bank, Kotak Mahindra Bank, Yes Bank, IDFC First Bank, and HSBC, have been identified for participation in the pilot stage.

Das mentioned that significant progress has been made in the usage of the e-rupee (CBDC), surpassing the milestone of 1 million transactions in a day on December 27, 2023.

Earlier reports also noted that the RBI had initiated the wholesale pilot of its CBDC in the call money market. The cautious approach by the RBI reflects a commitment to ensuring the safety and efficiency of the CBDC before widespread implementation.

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