What is the purpose of a central bank digital currency (CDBC)?
The main banks are concerned about the rapid increase in demand for cryptocurrencies, as it can destroy their monetary policy.
Since the price of crypto-assets depends only on the theory that society will value and also use them, unlike fiat money units, which are held by monetary policy and also the status of a legitimate payment resource.
As a result, the volatility of value was significant, as the analysis of crypto-assets is mainly based on unverified thoughts.
In addition, to fulfill monetary policymakers, major banks often determine short-term profitable rates in the interbank trading of reserves.
For example, economic institutions use the global interbank exchange for direct actions together with monetary units as well as other monetary derivatives.
Exchange-traded funds (ETFs), or monetary derivatives, acquire their price from the currency unit, which is intended as their underlying asset, and also on a pre-specified date and according to a pre-specified direction the depositor acquires or realizes a pre-specified number of fixed currency units.
Since cryptocurrencies are prevalent in the field of economic services, the main banks will lose the chance to implement monetary policy if they stop being the sole provider of such stocks.
In addition, if the financial work (for example, manufacturing, purchasing, and also the realization of products and services) starts to use crypto-assets and also categorically refuses to use the funds of the main bank as a calculated unit, in such a case the monetary strategy of the main bank will cease to be important.
How can the main banks avoid the influence of crypto-assets in fiat currency?
The introduction of CBDCs, or fiat currency in a numerical figure, is an effort by major banks to remain competitive in a dispersed economy.
For example, having established the October Twentieth, 2020 sand buck, the Bahamas was the first country to introduce a state CBDC.
Together with CBDC support, mainstream banks have a chance to continue to be important, offering more durable as well as stable computed units than crypto-assets, as well as making mainstream bank funds tempting as a form of payment in the digital economy.
In this post, I will talk about the Bahamas CBDC, what the Bahamian sand dollar is used for, as well as its direction.
What is the Bahamian Sand Dollar?
Since the late 1960s, the Bahamian macro-economy has depended on available funds.
Already after the separation of the Bahamas from England in 1973, the Main Central Bank of the Bahamas (BCB) was appointed as the official issuer of the national currency and also by 1974 took over the supervision of the currency policy.
Together with such times the population of the Bahamas has access to the improved version of bills and coins. For what reason did the Bahamas form a numerical monetary unit?
Up until 2019, the people of the Bahamas chose to use money means and also coins. But because of the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, the former capital city governor, the Honorable St. Petersburg Turnquest, announced the need to stimulate the introduction of numerical payment concepts.
As a result, the Bahamian coin was taken out of rotation in December 2020, and the Sand Dollar, a numerical currency issued by the main bank of the Bahamas, was introduced in October 2020.
Sand Dollar – this numerical version of the Bahamian dollar (B$), which is caused by increased access to controlled payments and other economic offers for residents of the state, not having any bank accounts, and also not being used to allocate.
The main central bank expects to increase the efficiency of transactions in the field of economic services and also reduce the price of service in the Bahamas because of the result of the introduction of this separate numerical unit of the main bank.
The Bahamas dollar, the national currency of the Bahamas, is pegged to the United States dollar in a 1:1 balance, and the sand dollar is pegged to the Bahamas dollar in a 1:1 balance.
However, the CBOB is directly liable for the sand buck, which is guaranteed by its cash reserves. In addition, the numerical version of the Bahamian dollar can be represented in the property as well as wholesale, as well as a separate CBDC.
Economic institutions, having additional deposits in the main bank, have all chances to apply large wholesale CBDC, in such case periods as well as separate CBDC specialized for extensive society.
In case together with numerical Bahamian sand dollar wholesale supplements will often be cut down by settlements according to interbank payments or clearing room operations, and residents can send and also purchase numerical payments together with support of the offered separate supplement.
Besides, any owner will still possess direct conditions to the main bank and also formally possess in the mute, which will lead to the formation of mixed CBDC, in which the Central Bank keeps separate fragments.
Since banks and also payment service providers (PSP) assume the main central bank, the resources of individual buyers, kept in the main bank of the Bahamas, are not identified in any way in the balance sheet reports of the authorized economic bodies (AFI).
History of the Sand Dollar Project
The activity according to the modernization of the payment concept of the Bahamas (PSMI), started at the beginning of the 2000s, contained the Sand Dollar plan as one of its fuller, aimed at increasing economic accessibility as well as providing equal access to economic offers by increasing the productivity of the domestic payment concept.
In December 2019, the 1st launch of the Sand Dollar semi-productive plan was carried out in Exuma Island, followed by Abaco in February 2020.
In the summer season of 2019, before the launch of the semi-production plan in Exuma, a targeted baseline study was carried out according to the problems of economic accessibility and ownership, which revealed a large degree of use of mobile phones and also the possibility that the population of the Bahamas will want to use numerical economic offers.
In addition, Abaco, which was hit by Storm Dorian in September 2019, has acquired an increase in a semi-productive plan to test the capabilities of emergency wireless interconnectivity to renew economic services.
How does the Bahamas Sand Dollar work?
To perform economic actions “sand dollar” needed a technical platform.
The main central bank of Bahamas has preferred firm NZIA Limited as the partner according to the introduction of technological processes Sand Dollar with the purpose of formation and also the introduction of a numerical version of the Bahamian dollar.
Due to joint work with the law firm Norton Rose Fulbright mixed scientific and technical authorization was connected with knowledge in the field of risks, authorities, and political figures, which allowed to introduction of the modern concept of CBDC.
The main command and control add-on of Project Sand Dollar, Cortex, gives the ability to manage absolutely all the nuances of the issuance of the numerical currency unit of the main bank from the beginning to the end:
Bahamian shoppers are required to have a prepaid Mastercard to pay with Sand Dollar support, and they also have the option to choose either a Degree I or Degree II electric wallet.
The limit for saving money in a Degree I electric wallet is Five Hundred $ and in a Degree II electric wallet is $8000.
The monthly transaction limit is $1500 as well as $10,000 for a Degree I electric wallet as well as a Degree II electric wallet accordingly.
Access to numerical wallets can be acquired together with the support of a physiological payment card game or a mobile add-on.
In addition, disclosure of the numerical wallet is not necessary in any way for service recognition, because the wallets of degree I or basic wallets are provided for users who do not need in any way to go through the operations of customer reliability control.
On the contrary, premium wallets or grade II wallets call for identification control based on risks, first of all before the consumer becomes established in the service.
In addition, degree III wallets are readily available for companies, philanthropic institutions, and other collective structures in the absence of certain transaction limits.
In this way, transactions among the electric wallets of the payer, as well as the recipient, can be carried out instantly, as prepaid card games or numerical wallets keep the funds of the main bank and are also based on the technological processes of the calculated account book.
A glimpse of the near future
The question of whether fiat currencies and decentralized cryptocurrencies will coexist in the future or whether one will eat the other has no conclusive answer yet.
However, The Sand Dollar’s design makes some very interesting arguments in favor of coexistence and makes a strong case that public networks will be the preferred environment for new digital currencies.
First, Zynesis specializes in public, decentralized blockchains rather than private networks.
While IBM has been involved in the development of both public and private blockchains, its World Wire payment system is based on the public Stellar blockchain.
The central bank has also prioritized interoperability of the Sand Dollar network with other payment channels, so it appears the Bahamian digital dollar is geared toward use on a public network.
Second, the sand dollar will be closely tied to identity solutions, which themselves are well suited to public blockchains. Blockchain-based mobile identity solutions are already being used in the Bahamas in place of traditional documents.
Third, in anticipation of the Sand Dollar, the Bahamas’ central bank pushed through the “Payment Instruments Supervisory Rules 2017,” which essentially outline how to conduct and accept digital currency payments in The Bahamas.
These rules were intentionally made broad enough to simultaneously cover the digital Bahamian dollar and cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin.
As the central bank stated about this choice: “The public’s sensitivity to what they perceive to be high banking and government fees has led to increased regulatory and private sector dialog about quality service and innovative products and services.”
In other words, additional consumer choice of currencies can be very useful.
One could even say that any currency without competition from alternatives is monopoly money.
Other countries, such as New Zealand, are leaning toward similar ideas. But in this case, it is worth noting that the Bahamian dollar is pegged to the US dollar anyway, so it probably has far less to fear from alternative currencies than most other countries.
As one of the most fully organized and sophisticated digital currencies to date, the Sand Dollar may well serve as a foundation for the development of other national digital currencies.
More information on the Sand Dollar, including which family islands it will be piloted on, is expected in the coming weeks.
How to buy the Bahamas’ Sand Dollar?
Customers can sign up with financial institutions supervised by CBOB, i.e. AFIs that are authorized agents of Sand Dollar.
AFIs, including Omni Financial Group Limited, MoneyMaxx, Island Pay, SunCash, Cash N’ Go, Kanoo Pays, and MobileAssist, can connect customers through their specialized applications, also called digital wallets.
Below are the steps to purchase or sign up for Sand Dollar:
- Select and contact a preferred AFI that supports Sand Dollar.
- Select a purpose from the options offered, such as business or personal-I, personal-II. Business wallets are offered for commercial purposes, personal-I can be used by non-residents/non-banking/visitors, and personal-II is for Bahamian residents only.
- Provide the required KYC information for due diligence purposes.
- Upload your e-wallet from the authorized financial institution of your choice and follow their specific instructions.
But how can a business get the opportunity to use Sand Dollar? The registration steps for merchants are similar to those for individuals, except that they must select “Business Wallet” from the options offered.
Merchant wallets have a fund limit of $8,000 to $1,000,000 with an unlimited annual transaction limit. Upon registration, merchant wallets must provide a Value Added Tax (VAT) certificate and a valid business license to link to a bank account.
CBOB Sand Dollar vs. ECCB DCash
The Eastern Caribbean Central Bank (ECCB) has securely minted a digital version of the Eastern Caribbean dollar as legal tender under the DCash pilot project.
The monetary authority of the Eastern Caribbean Currency Union (ECCU), the ECCB, will remain responsible for the issuance, distribution, and redemption of the DCash.
The development and testing phase of the DCash pilot project began on March 12, 2019, with five islands participating, including Antigua and Barbuda, St. Lucia, Grenada, and St. Kitts and Nevis.
However, utilizing distributed ledger technology (DLT) created by technology provider Bitt, participating countries will begin its deployment and implementation in March 2021.
The DCash pilot is designed to address challenges such as the high costs associated with existing payment options, banking, cash management, and disbursement, and inefficient check settlement procedures that slow down business operations.
The Future of the Sand Dollar
Creating a CBDC solution in uncharted territory by studying the needs of the Bahamian population was a necessary step taken by CBOB to improve financial inclusion and access to financial services in The Bahamas.
The Sand Dollar was one of the first examples of a blockchain-based central bank digital currency, gaining widespread adoption among businesses, financial institutions and customers in less than a year.
However, according to a study by the London School of Economics, the Sand Dollar balance increased by less than $300,000 between January 2021 and June 2022.
In contrast, the value of banknotes increased by $42 million, suggesting that the sand dollar is unlikely to be considered a means of payment and the need to educate Bahamians about the use and benefits of digital payments.