Customers are so comfortable using their money now that there is no justification for central bank digital currencies (CBDCs), says Ashok, head of blockchain and digital assets for Asia Pacific at payments giant Mastercard.・Ashok Venkateshwaran told CNBC.
“The difficult thing is to popularize it,” he said in an interview with CBDC at the Singapore FinTech Festival on November 15.
“If you have a CBDC in your wallet, you should be able to spend it wherever you want – almost the same as money today.”
Mastercard is launching a CBDC partner program with members including Ripple, Fireblocks, and Consensys. The initiative is aimed at stimulating dialogue between key players in the industry, and is seen as a way for the company to deepen its involvement in CBDC development as more countries consider implementing CBDCs.
According to the Atlantic Council, 130 countries representing 98% of the world’s gross domestic product (GDP) are considering CBDCs. As of May 2020, there were only 35 countries. However, only 11 countries have introduced CBDC so far.
For the time being, Venkateswaran said it would be difficult to justify the effort. Building the necessary infrastructure “will take a lot of time and effort on parts of the country.”
Mastercard recently completed a CBDC pilot in Hong Kong focused on demonstrating how CBDC or tokenized deposits can be leveraged for real-world asset (RWA) transactions.
“The pilot also demonstrated the potential for seamless financing and payments within and outside of the Web3 Marketplace using retail CBDC,” the company said.
｜Translation: Edited by CoinDesk JAPAN
｜Editing: Koki Mizuno, Takayuki Masuda
｜Original text: Mastercard Says Customers Are Too Comfortable With Today’s Money for Adoption of CBDCs: CNBC