Thailand plans Central Bank Digital Currency development

Thailand plans Central Bank Digital Currency development, thus eyeing R3’s Corda platform as a base for the project. The BoT collaborated with eight other banks to work on the so-called Project Inthanon.

22 August, AtoZ Markets The central bank of Thailand has reportedly announced that it plans to work on a wholesale Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) that will deploy R3’s Corda platform. The press release published on the 21st of August confirms the news.

Thailand plans Central Bank Digital Currency development

A CBDC is a digital currency that is issued by a central bank, whose legal tender status is dependent on the government regulation. The “wholesale” option of CBDC restricts its use to financial institutions and markets. This is compared to“retail” CBDC that is available for the general public’s use. 

R3’s Corda is a distributed ledger technology (DLT) platform that has been created to work within the financial service industry. It utilizes a permissioned system to limit the data access to specific participants. 

As per the BoT’s statement, the bank is planning to collaborate with eight financial institutions on the project regarding the issuance of CBDC. Some of them include Bangkok Bank Public, Krung Thai, Siam Commercial Bank, Standard Chartered Bank and HSBC. The bank has mentioned a “collaborative milestone” in its statement. The group is planning to achieve this milestone by jointly working on design and development of the proof-of-concept wholesale CBDC prototype.

This will come as a first phase, which is expected to be completed by the first quarter of 2019. 

Project Inthanon

The project has been called Project Inthanon. It reportedly seeks to “enhance the efficiency of the Thai financial market infrastructure” and contribute to the design of its future evolution.

The announcement also states that in addition to this project, the central bank is “conducting a DLT (distributed ledger technology) proof of concept for scriptless government savings bond sale to improve operational efficiency.”

In the meantime, CBDCs are continuing to attract interest from the banking sector participants from all over the world. Earlier this April, R3’s research director Anthony Lewis has spoken during the Deconomy conference in South Korea. He has forecasted that financial institutions will escalate their efforts to develop wholesale CBDCs. 

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