Across the world, central banks of major economies are considering the proposals and implications of issuing a central bank digital currency (CBDC) – a digital version of the fiat currency. However, they remain cautious of CBDCs’ potential to profoundly impact the monetary or financial stability of an economy provided the novelty and complexity associated with it. In early 2021, the Reserve Bank of India also acknowledged that it is exploring the need to issue a CBDC for India.
In this context, Vidhi Centre for Legal Policy organised a discussion on ‘Central Bank Digital Currencies – Is This the Future of Money?‘ with a Keynote Address by T. Rabi Sankar, Deputy Governor, Reserve Bank of India to deconstruct CBDCs, and assess the opportunities and challenges associated with CBDC issuance. This was followed by a panel discussion with Saugata Bhattacharya, Executive Vice President and Chief Economist, Axis Bank and Ashraf Khan, Senior Financial Sector Expert, International Monetary Fund. The session was moderated by Shehnaz Ahmed, Senior Resident Fellow and Lead, Fintech, Vidhi Centre for Legal Policy.
Vidhi’s recent working paper seeks to initiate and inform the public discourse on CBDC in India. By tracing CBDC developments in 43 countries, it seeks to analyse the preliminary considerations for a retail CBDC issuance in India. Read the working paper here.