Source: Bank of England
HM Treasury and the Bank of England have published a joint consultation.
The consultation paper sets out analysis by HM Treasury and the Bank of England on the potential case for a UK central bank digital currency – a “digital pound” and consult on the key features of a potential model.
A digital pound would be a new form of digital money for use by households and businesses for their everyday payments needs. As part of the wider landscape of money and payments it would sit alongside, not replace, cash – a digital counterpart to familiar, trusted banknotes and coins, subject to rigorous standards of privacy and data protection. This is in line with our ambition that public trust in money remains high, and that modern forms of money and payments meet the evolving needs of individuals and businesses.
Unlike crypto assets and stable coins, the digital pound would be a central bank digital currency or CBDC – sterling currency issued by the Bank of England and not the private sector.
Although it is too early to commit to build the infrastructure for a digital pound, the Bank of England and the Government are convinced that further preparatory work is justified to appropriately respond to the emergence of new technologies, international developments and fresh opportunities. In the four-month consultation period, officials in my department and the Bank of England will engage extensively across the UK to seek views on a potential digital pound. Responses to the consultation are invited from all interested members of the public, experts, and the widest range of organisations.
This consultation is a vital step in positioning the UK to act decisively by introducing a digital pound, should we choose to do so.