June 13, 2023

Bank of Thailand Launches Retail CBDC Pilot in Cooperation with 3 Payment Providers

Bank of Thailand

Bank of Thailand

The Bank of Thailand will launch a retail central bank digital currency (CBDC) pilot project after being delayed from the last year, according to Cointelegraph.

Local media reported that the Bank of Thailand would cooperate on this project with three payment providers, including Bank of Ayudhya (Krungsri), Siam Commercial Bank, and Singapore-based payments service provider 2C2P. The pilot project, which will run through August, will see the participation of 10,000 users.

Each payment provider launched its own app to test the project which will be available to the selected users. This app includes a wallet and a QR code scanner.

Bank of Ayudhya will select 2,000 of its staff members to take part in the pilot project in addition to 100 merchants located around the bank’s headquarters. In this regard, Bank of Ayudhya Managing Director Sam Tanskul said: “The bank needs to determine a strategy to differentiate retail CBDC from [its] PromptPay service.”

Siam Commercial Bank will do the same as the Bank of Ayudhya regarding involving some of its staff members and merchants around it.

The Thai central bank’s plan was earlier announced in August and it was supposed to be launched by the end of 2022.

According to Statista, the number of active newly opened accounts for cryptocurrency trading in Thailand amounted to 41,000 on April 3. The number of new trading accounts peaked in December 2021 but showed a slight decline afterward. It is estimated that over 4.3 million people, 6.47% of Thailand’s total population, currently own cryptocurrency.

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