The Central Bank of Brazil, Banco Central do Brasil, is studying the use of central bank digital currencies (CBDC) and evaluating the benefits and impacts of the eventual issuance of the asset.
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An official announcement states that the bank aims to evolve the physical support of fiduciary currencies to the digital medium. In order to anticipate the future of financial relations, the bank decided to create a working group to discuss the impacts of an eventual issuance of digital currency in Brazil.
The bank's Chief of Cybersecurity and Technical Innovation Department, Aristides Andrade Cavalcante Neto, says the amount of electronic payments has been growing in recent years thanks in particular to the evolution of mobile device and communication technology.
"However, our money remains materialized in paper and metal circles, and there is still no digital representation of money accessible to the citizen. So, a digital currency issued by a central bank would allow Brazilians to interact with their money in a completely electronic way," he added.
Brazil's central bank also wants to study the proposition of a digital currency issuance model, with risk identification, including cybersecurity, data protection and normative and regulatory adherence and analysis of CBDC's impacts on financial inclusion and stability and the conduct of monetary and economic policies.
In June, the bank ordered Mastercard and Visa to stop processing WhatsApp payment transactions.
The central bank suspended WhatsApp Pay, the payment service of the popular messaging app in the country, in order "to preserve an adequate competitive environment" and gain time to evaluate the risks that service represents for Brazil's financial sector.
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