Japan has been preparing for the issuance of digital currency in both the public and private sectors following swift moves by China and other countries to do the same, according to Japan Times.
Hiromi Yamaoka, a former senior official in charge of payment and settlement systems at the Bank of Japan, is pushing to issue a private-sector driven digital currency. He is currently chairing the ‘Digital Currency Forum’ in Japan, which started a joint study for developments with around 30 major companies including Japan’s MUFG Bank, Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corp., and Mizuho Bank.
The Digital Currency Forum plans to start a feasibility study for its virtual currency in 2021, aiming at bridging the various existing cashless payment services and boosting interoperability by offering their ‘common’ digital currency. Yamaoka said the consortium hopes to create ‘some form’ of digital currency, similar to Facebook’s Diem plan, by 2023 while seeking collaboration with the BOJ to develop technologies if possible.
‘Japan would lag behind other countries if we take a wait-and-see stance until the rollout of the BOJ’s CBDC’, Japan Times quoted Yamaoka.