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Hong Kong explores options for digital currency

Wednesday 6th October, 2021

The Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) has released a technical whitepaper exploring potential technical design options for digital currency.

In June this year the HKMA announced its Fintech 2025 strategy, this included strengthening research work on central bank digital currency (CBDC) with a view to future-proofing Hong Kong in terms of readiness.

The HKMA has started a study on the prospect of issuing retail CBDC in Hong Kong via e-HKD, to come up with an initial view by the middle of next year. The publication of the Whitepaper constitutes part of the HKMA’s research effort on the technical front.

Building on the model for retail CBDC that the HKMA is jointly investigating with the Hong Kong Centre of the BIS Innovation Hub, the research explores potential technical design options for issuing and distributing retail CBDCs, including allowing transaction traceability in a privacy-amicable manner.

Mr Eddie Yue, Chief Executive of the HKMA, said, “The Whitepaper marks the first step of our technical exploration for the e-HKD. The knowledge gained from this research, together with the experience we acquired from other CBDC projects, would help inform further consideration and deliberation on the technical design of the e-HKD. We also look forward to receiving feedback and suggestions from the academia and industry to enrich our perspectives.”

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