While numerous countries have announced their plans to join the central bank digital currency (CBDC) race by exploring its retail version, the Philippines took a different path and opted for the wholesale model.
Speaking to CoinGeek Backstage on the sidelines of the Philippine Blockchain Week, Simit Naik said nChain could be instrumental in supporting the Philippine government’s wholesale CBDC project.
Naik is the Director of the Commercial and Strategy team at nChain, the company that prides itself as the global leader in blockchain research and development. nChain stood out during the Philippine Blockchain Week as it was among the few institutions that shed light on how the Southeast Asian country could leverage blockchain to build enterprise applications for governments.
“How can we build products and services, and solutions on top of the blockchain? What values does that give to the government?” said Naik, listing down the things nChain seeks to attain as it looks to aid the Philippines in its CBDC journey, adding that the company could also lend a hand in handling data and improving registry services using the distributed ledger technology.
“When we share data across multiple departments, there’s a lot of challenges with silos, with integrity, and so, we are looking at how we can build those kinds of solutions to address the challenges in data sharing and data integrity,” he added.
Naik said conversations are ongoing with key government officials on how the country could kickstart its CBDC scheme, adding that apart from their advice, the Philippines could also look into nChain’s CBDC playbook to help the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) navigate in creating its wholesale CBDC during its initial phase of planning.
“Before we move on to the technology, we’ll try to understand what it is we are trying to achieve, and then we move on to the design; we’ll talk about what the different technologies we can use, what are the different approaches we can use for CBDC,” Naik said, explaining the complex process that governments must go through before launching their CBDCs.
Naik estimates that the Philippines would have to go through a five-stage journey before launching its CBDC—from research to design, proof of concept, pilot, and production.
Currently, nChain is engaging with the provincial government of Bataan as the first step in delivering its solutions and services to the country and helping key industry players in building their strategy on blockchain and using that as use-cases to support a wider adoption of the technology.
Concluding the talk, Naik said he was delighted to be part of the first-ever Philippine Blockchain Week, which he claimed opened doors for the Philippines to explore and realize the true utility and power that blockchain can bring.
To learn more about central bank digital currencies and some of the design decisions that need to be considered when creating and launching it, read nChain’s CBDC playbook.
Watch: Philippine Blockchain Week highlights: Positioning the Philippines as blockchain capital of Asia
New to Bitcoin? Check out CoinGeek’s Bitcoin for Beginners section, the ultimate resource guide to learn more about Bitcoin—as originally envisioned by Satoshi Nakamoto—and blockchain.