Mastercard is still bullish on CBDCs, working on CBDC infrastructure

on Oct 29, 2021
  • Mastercard’s CEO has stated that the payments processing firm is working on an infrastructure for CBDC.
  • According to the CEO, this infrastructure will act as a bridge between the government and the private sector.
  • This announcement comes after the Bahamas became the first country in the world to issue a CBDC.

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Mastercard has been actively involved in pushing its crypto agenda. Earlier this week, the payment processing firm had announced that it will be enabling banks that use its services to access crypto services. Now, the firm is turning its attention towards central bank digital currencies (CBDCs).

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In an earnings call with stakeholders and investors, Michael Miebach, Mastercard’s CEO, stated that the firm was turning its attention towards CBDCs.

Mastercard Working on CBDC Network

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During the earnings call, Miebach stated that Mastercard had reported increased growth in the number of customers using their cards to buy cryptocurrencies. To push its crypto agenda, the firm had also partnered with several crypto firms. During the earnings call, Miebach touched on the issue of CBDCs.

“We are saying at this point in time, the most likely chance for this kind of technology to work for payments is if it’s issued through a government in the form of a CBDC. We said that on a couple of calls before, and we said that we will make our network ready to do that as and when a government is ready to put out a CBDC that will exist alongside the dollar or the euro as a settlement currency in our network,” Miebach stated.

The CEO further stated that Mastercard could play a role in CBDC development and deployment as the platform would be a “safe space” for governments and private payment sectors to work together.

Countries Pushing for CBDCs

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Countries have been racing towards CBDC development. The UK has already set up the Digital Pound Foundation to research the viability of a digital pound. Nigeria also recently announced plans to launch the eNaira, making it the first African country to launch a CBDC. 

This week, Bahamas became the first country globally to issue a CBDC known as the Sand Dollar. Other countries that have also made major strides in CBDC development include China and Thailand, which commenced their CBDC plans earlier. Last month, the Chair of the US Federal Reserve, Jerome Powell, had stated that the US would soon release a paper on whether it should issue a CBDC.

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