The Bank of Canada has initiated an online public consultation to gather opinions on the characteristics of a digital Canadian dollar. The consultation, which started on May 13th, will remain open until June 19th.
A rapid shift towards digital payments
In recent years, the rise of cryptocurrencies and the rapid shift towards digital payments has spurred many central banks around the world to consider the development of their own digital currencies.
Canada is no exception, and although the Bank of Canada has stated in 2021, that there wasn’t a “strong case” for a CBDC yet.
However, it did acknowledge that the situation could change in the future, and that it needed to prepare for a potential shift towards a digital Canadian dollar.
In light of this, the Bank of Canada is now launching an online public consultation on CBDC features. The consultation will run until June 19 and seeks to gather input from Canadians on what they would like to see in a digital Canadian dollar.
This is a proactive move by the Bank of Canada, as it recognizes that it may need to implement a CBDC in the future and wants to be prepared for any eventuality.
“As Canada’s central bank, we want to make sure everyone can always take part in our country’s economy. That means being ready for whatever the future holds.”
Carolyn Rogers, Bank of Canada senior deputy governor.
In addition to seeking input on the potential features of a digital Canadian dollar, the Bank of Canada is soliciting opinions on usage scenarios, security considerations, and privacy and accessibility concerns related to a CBDC.
Following the lead of other notable countries
The Bank of Canada is following in the footsteps of other countries’ financial institutions by launching a public consultation on a potential central bank digital currency (CBDC).
For instance, the Bank of England is looking to build a digital pound, which could be launched in the “second half of the decade.”
In contrast, China has already rolled out its digital yuan and in February announced that government staff in Changshu would be paid in the CBDC.