Bank of Russia began testing CBDC in 2022 and expects to implement a formal banking launch in the presidential election year of 2024.
The Bank of Russia continues to work on the future adoption of the central bank digital currency (CBDC), planning the official launch of the digital ruble in a few years, writes cointelegraph.com..
According to the Bank of Russia’s latest monetary policy update, the authority will begin connecting all banks and credit institutions to the digital ruble platform in 2024. This would be an important year for Russia as the country is expected to hold presidential elections in March 2024. and the current president Vladimir Putin has the constitutional right to be re-elected.
By that time, the central bank expects to complete tests of customer-to-customer “real money” transactions, as well as testing of customer-to-business and business-to-customer settlements.
In 2023, the Bank of Russia also plans to conduct beta tests of smart contracts based on digital rubles for transactions by a limited circle of participants.
The bank emphasized that it expects to continue rolling out CBDC in a gradual manner, unlocking new tests and different features year by year. As soon as the Federal Treasury is ready, the digital ruble will also include consumer-to-government, business-to-government, government-to-consumer and government-to-business payments, the Bank of Russia said.
The central bank also expects to introduce offline mode for the digital ruble by 2025, alongside the integration of non-bank financial intermediaries, financial platforms and exchange infrastructure.
“The staged process of introducing the digital ruble will give market participants the opportunity to adapt to the new conditions,” the Bank of Russia said.
The Bank of Russia will also cooperate with other central banks developing their own digital currencies to conduct cross-border and foreign exchange operations with digital currencies, the authority added.
As previously reported by Cointelegraph, Russia launched its first digital ruble tests in February 2022, following the official CBDC roadmap launched last year. The Bank of Russia previously formed a group of twelve banks to test the digital ruble, including big giants banks such as Sber, VTB, Tinkoff Bank and others.
While keeping pace with CBDC rollout plans, Russia has fallen somewhat behind in its goals to regulate the crypto industry. President Putin urged the adoption of crypto regulations several times before Russia passed its crypto law “On Digital Financial Assets”, which has not changed much as it still lacks many regulatory aspects such as crypto mining, taxation and others.