According to a news release from Moroccan media, the North African state’s apex bank is exploring the idea of a state-sanctioned digital currency.
The announcement, which was made over the weekend, confirmed that Bank Al-Maghrib (BAM), the Kingdom of Morocco’s central bank, has set up a committee comprising industry experts to investigate the potential upside of sanctioning central bank digital currencies (CBDCs).
Following the economic downturn caused by the covid-induced lockdowns, many world economies are still trying to find their feet.
Consumers were forced to rely on digital channels to pay for necessities, and the rise in demand for digital assets like Bitcoin, saw a new financial ecosystem emerging.
The fact that anyone could own digital assets was appealing, and the absence of any central authority saw the nascent industry explode.
Global regulators have been trying to manage crypto’s rise with regulations, but it continues to grow. To prevent fiat currencies from losing their relevance, many central banks are exploring the idea of a digital version of their fiat currency.
The Moroccan apex bank was quick to point out the research made available by the Bank for International Settlements (BIS) concerning CBDCs.
The BIS discovered that over 20% of central banks are ramping up operations to issue state-sanctioned digital currencies in the next three years, with China leading the charge with their Digital Currency Electronic Payment (DCEP) project.
Although 60% do not intend to make a digital format for their fiat currencies, 86% consider the idea.
The committee will set out to identify and analyze the contributions, benefits, and risks of a CBDC in the Moroccan economy. The committee will also look into any likely repercussions CBDCs may have on the country’s monetary policy, the structure of banking intermediation, financial stability, and the legal framework.
The committee will be working closely with other government regulatory bodies in the country on measures to monitor crypto use within and outside the nation. However, BAM has not committed to a time-frame for a digital copy of its dirham.