India’s central bank published a “Booklet on Payment Systems” on Monday with a section on central bank digital currencies (CBDCs). The document covers “the journey of payment and settlement systems in India during the second decade of the millennium, viz., from the beginning of 2010 till the end of 2020,” the RBI described.
A section of the booklet reads:
Private digital currencies (PDCs) / virtual currencies (VCs) / cryptocurrencies (CCs) have gained popularity in recent years. In India, the regulators and governments have been sceptical about these currencies and are apprehensive about the associated risks.
However, the central bank confirmed:
Nevertheless, RBI is exploring the possibility as to whether there is a need for a digital version of fiat currency and in case there is, then how to operationalise it.
The RBI booklet describes a CBDC as “a legal tender and a central bank liability in digital form denominated in a sovereign currency and appearing on the central bank’s balance sheet.” The central bank added: “Innovations are changing the payments space rapidly. This has made central banks around the world to examine whether they could leverage on technology and issue fiat money in digital form.”