Russian Central Bank Readies ‘Real-world’ CBDC Pilot – Digital Ruble Launch Imminent?
The Russian Central Bank is reportedly readying to launch a pilot of its digital ruble project, the first of its kind in the world. According to local sources, the Bank of Russia, the country’s central bank, has prepared the legal framework for the introduction of the blockchain-based digital version of the national currency, the ruble. The bank is about to launch a real-world experiment to test the digital ruble technology. The news about the imminent debut of the world’s first national CBDC was first reported by the popular Russian financial news outlet RBC. According to the publication, the Russian Central Bank is done preparing the legal infrastructure for the launch of the digital ruble and is about to start the pilot project. The Bank of Russia is reportedly in active talks with major Russian IT companies and banks. The pilot project is to be tested with the involvement of commercial and governmental entities. The sources claim that the pilot project of digital ruble will be announced by the Central Bank soon. The first participants in the project are expected to be the Sberbank, Russia’s largest bank, and the Alfa-Bank, one of the key financial institutions of the country. The digital ruble is reportedly set to be the first CBDC launched on the national level and it is expected to bring forth major changes in the financial landscape in Russia. The bank is reported to be exploring how the digital ruble can be used and circulated among users, emphasizing that it is intended to be compatible with existing banking infrastructure. The project is also expected to explore ways to make the digital currency CBDC more widely available and accessible.