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Challenges in eRupee’s wider use: RBI governor

Mumbai, Dec 8, 2022

RBI governor Shaktikanta Das has said that there would be many challenges to widespread use of eRupee — the central bank digital currency (CBDC) — and they would have to be dealt with. The eRupee will, however, have the same anonymity feature that is available for cash payments.

The governor was referring to the law that makes it an offence for merchants to turn down fiat currency. Theamendment to the RBI Act reckons fiat currency to include CBDC.

Das said the wholesale pilot in government securities was “very satisfactory”. “The technology and processes haveby and large worked. Market participants are happy that there is no need for collateral in G-secs transactions and it is instant settlement. There are some learnings, and we are working on that,” said Das. “The retail pilot has started from only the first week of December and there will be several learnings. But let there not be any fear psychosis that somebody is going to chase,” said Das.

RBI deputy governor T Rabi Sankar said, “There can be innovative solutions for anonymity. We are looking at using one of the technology solutions for anonymity. It is also possible to have a legal provision to ensure anonymity. So, what exactly happens will depend on how things evolve. ”

On anonymity, Das said that in all legal respects, CBDC will not be different from the paper currency in the eyes of law. “The income tax department has got limits for cash withdrawals and cash payments, and the same rules will apply for CBDC. ” Das said that just like in paper currency, the transfer of CBDC will not be known to the bank as the tokens will get transferred from mobile to mobile without being recorded in bank books.

[The Times of India]

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