Russian CBDC Launch Being Delayed Indefinitely: Details

The central bank digital currency (CBDC) trial deployment by the Bank of Russia has been postponed further.

The central bank digital currency (CBDC) trial deployment by the Bank of Russia has been postponed further. 

According to the state-owned TASS on March 28, the CBDC pilot will not begin on April 1, as previously stated, since relevant legislation has only gone through the first session in the State Duma — the Federal Assembly’s lower chamber. The proposal may become law by the beginning of May, claims TASS.

13 Private Banks Taking Part in the CBDC Trial

Notably, the participating institutions have indicated that they are prepared to start the trial. There are now 13 as compared to 15 private banks taking part in the trial. Together with one of the biggest insurance firms in the nation, Ingosstrakh, certain bank workers would serve as CBDC retail payments’ test subjects. 

Executives from the bank showed enthusiasm for such an initiative. Vitaly Kopysov, Sinara Bank’s director of innovations, expressed his views: 

“The use of smart contracts should reduce the operational load of banks and make the deals transparent, which not only will reduce the chances of the misuse of government and banks’ funds, but ultimately simplify the control over the existing contracts.”

Even though it will be on a small scale, the future pilot will feature genuine businesses and customers. The initial stage won’t be open to the broader public since the banks will only start the pilot with selected customers. The Bank of Russia aims to decide how to grow the digital ruble beyond the initial phase.

The Central Bank of Russia (CBR) is adamant on integrating cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology into Russia’s internal financial sector, despite the numerous international financial restrictions that are currently in place. 

CBR is thus reported to be looking at various methods to achieve this integration. However, an article by the regional news agency Tass in December reported that Russia’s cryptocurrency mining law to allow cryptocurrency mining and the selling of mined cryptocurrency was placed on hold.