The Chairman of the Bank of Russia, Elvira Nabiullina, said during an online conference that the pilot launch of the state digital currency in the country is possible as early as the end of 2021.
According to her, the Central Bank is now waiting to discuss the consultation report issued by the agency, and also plans to collect feedback and proposals for the development of the digital ruble by the end of 2020. If the launch of a digital currency in Russia is considered appropriate, the Central Bank will start working on a full-fledged project concept and the development of a digital ruble. Nabiullina stressed that the launch of the state digital currency in the near future is “quite possible”.
“In our opinion, there must be a pilot stage on a limited number of users in order for everything to be worked out, so that we understand how it works. We believe that such piloting will be possible sometime by the end of next year, ” she said.
The head of the Central Bank of Russia said that the agency has no task to displace cash. The digital ruble should become the third form of money, along with cash and non-cash funds. The question of how to use the ruble will be decided by citizens and businesses, while the introduction of the state digital currency should be smooth.
“Our task is to ensure the rapid conversion of one type of ruble into another. We do not set any task to save on emissions, ” the head of the Central Bank of Russia said.
At the same time, Nabiullina recalled that now the country is developing a digital economy and digital transformation is taking place. In such conditions, ” of course, there should be a transformation of the payment system.” According to her, each digital ruble will receive a unique code, similar to paper money. This should increase transparency in transactions with the national digital currency, but anonymity, as in the case of paper money, should not be expected:
“There will be no anonymity in the sense that there is in cash. But privacy is supposed to be enhanced. Maximum confidentiality is the main task when introducing the digital ruble.”
Earlier, Dmitry Peskov, the special representative of the President of the Russian Federation for digital and technological development, spoke about the prospects of the digital ruble. According to him, the full launch of the project can take place within 3-7 years.