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Bank of Russia Digital Ruble Pilot Update: 'Everything Going as Planned'

The Bank of Russia offered an update about the state of the digital ruble, the Russian central bank digital currency (CBDC), which is currently in a nationwide pilot. Elvira Nabiullina, governor of the Bank of Russia, stated that the pilot was “going as planned” and that more participants and use cases would be added next year.

Bank of Russia on Digital Ruble Pilot: ‘Everything Going as Planned’

The Bank of Russia has offered an update about the digital ruble and the pilot testing the functionalities of the Russian central bank digital currency (CBDC). During a forum, Bank of Russia governor Elvira Nabiullina explained the project was still ongoing and that the institution was getting feedback testing the various functionalities of this new currency.

Nabiullina stated:

We started the pilot project on the digital ruble with real operations and with real clients in August. Here everything is going as planned, we are testing operations, first of all the opening of wallets, transfers between citizens, [and] the payment of purchases via QR codes.

Furthermore, Nabiullina stressed the bank was watching the pilot results to determine which aspects needed to be fine-tuned.

Upcoming Pilot Expansion

Furthermore, Nabiullina gave information about the pilot extension for the upcoming year and how this expansion would be done. On this, she declared:

We are preparing to expand the project next year adding new participants, new clients, including transfers between legal entities.

Thirteen banks are involved in the current pilot, which includes activities in Moscow and ten more cities in Russia, with retail payments in Moscow’s subway, which has traditionally been a testing site for innovations.

Furthermore, while only 13 banks completed the necessary preparations and were approved to participate in this first phase, 16 more are to be included next year, according to the first deputy governor of the Bank of Russia, Olga Skorobogatova.

The idea of a digital ruble has been gaining traction, with more than half of all Russian citizens being open to storing some of their assets in the Russian CBDC, according to a recent poll ordered by the Russian SPB Exchange. Nonetheless, Only 2% of the users polled said they were ready to keep all their savings stored as digital rubles.

Skorobogatova and Nabiullina expect the digital ruble to reach mainstream adoption in Russia by 2025.

What do you think about the ongoing Russian digital ruble pilot? Tell us in the comments section below.

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