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Singapore central bank tests wholesale CBDC for payments

The central bank of Singapore has announced a pilot program for the real-time issuance of a central bank digital currency (CBDC) based on the Singapore dollar, with the aim of enabling local banks to use it for payments.

“I am pleased to announce that MAS will trial the ‘live’ issuance of wholesale CBDC to instantly facilitate payments between commercial banks.”MAS managing director Ravi Menon said at the Singapore Fintech Festival on 16 November.

So far, MAS has only simulated CBDC issuance in test environments. Menon said the central bank will soon work with Singapore banks to test the use of CBDC as an exchange asset for domestic payments.

As part of the testing program, Menon announced that banks will issue tokenized liabilities that represent loans on their balance sheets. Retail customers can use these tokenized liabilities to make transactions with merchants, which will be settled through the automatic transfer of wholesale CBDC.

“Therefore, clearing and settlement occur in a single step on the same infrastructure, unlike the current system where clearing and settlement occur on different systems and settlement occurs with a certain delay.”Announced.

Wholesale CBDC is mostly used by central and commercial banks and other large financial institutions to process payments.

On November 15, MAS added five more pilot programs to its financial infrastructure testing program, called Project Guardian, to evaluate different use cases related to asset tokenization.

Thanks to new partnerships, the number of members of the project increased from 12 to 17; This now includes major financial institutions such as BNY Mellon, HSBC and Citigroup.

Project Guardian members include major banks such as Citi, HSBC and BNY Mellon. Source:

MAS and New York Federal Reserve on May 1 we published the results It’s part of a six-year experimental program on the usefulness of CBDCs for cross-border payments, called Project Ubin. The results showed that CBDCs are potentially useful for making cross-border payments more efficient and convenient.

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