Bank of England to Speak at OMFIF Organized CBDC Meeting

UTC by Godfrey Benjamin · 3 min read
Bank of England to Speak at OMFIF Organized CBDC Meeting
Mark Carney, Governor of the Bank of England. Photo: World Economic Forum / Flickr

The key focus of the meeting will be to tackle the ways in which blockchain technology can benefit various models for CBDCs.

The Bank of England will participate in a historic meeting of Central Banks organized by the Official Monetary and Financial Institutions Forum (OMFIF) on the issue of the CBDC development. Scheduled for August 19th, Bank of England’s Fintech Specialist Simon Scorer will join other European Central Bank experts in discussing digital currencies and their possible infrastructural designs.

The roundtable meeting will also have in attendance Thomas Moser, Alternate Member of the Governing Board of the Swiss National Bank, Aniko Szombati, Chief Digital Officer of the Magyar Nemzeti Bank. Cees van Wijk from the Bank of Netherlands and Sky Guo Cypherium’s CEO will complete the list of the speakers.

As Cointelegraph reported, a key focus of the meeting will be to tackle the ways in which blockchain technology can benefit various models for CBDCs. This includes the use of smart contracts — e.g., as with designs for “programmable money” — and models for interoperable blockchain networks both within and beyond national borders

Following its previous reassessment of the potential benefits of a Central Bank Digital Currency, the Bank of England may at the meeting reveal its plans for a Central Bank Digital Currency to consolidate its previous research in the growing CBDC trend.

Andrew Bailey, the governor of the Bank of England, during a webinar last month said; “we are looking at the question of, should we create a Bank of England digital currency. We’ll go on looking at it, as it does have huge implications on the nature of payments and society.” The stance of the Bank of England has never really been firm on digital currencies and the bank’s involvement has been largely based on research and not necessarily directed at the development of one.

Bank of England Stance on Crypto and CBDC

The Bank of England at the Davos conference in 2019 said that digital currencies are not a threat to financial institutions. This position was under governor Mark Carney, a more pro-BTC veteran compared with governor Andrew Bailey.

However, with the surge of cryptocurrencies particularly in the UK, the previous stance of the BoE is quite progressive for massive adoption. In line with the advancement of digital currencies in the past years, some prominent members of the UK government once supported the call to pay taxes and utility bills in Bitcoin

Despite different positions from different time eras in the UK, the British apex bank through tomorrow’s conference will give a better glimpse into its future plans for a CBDCs and cryptocurrencies in general.

Fueled by the coronavirus pandemic and the prospects of Facebook Inc (NASDAQ: FB) Libra project, many Central Banks around the world are seriously considering developing one. With countries like China, Switzerland, and more already in the lead, this OMFIF organized conference will help boost progressive debates moving forward.

Sky Guo, CEO of Cypherium believes that as CBDCs are becoming part of the new normal and in their early phases of conception, “now is the time to debate the advantages and disadvantages of infrastructural ideas, especially related to how these instruments will interact and operate with each other.”

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