Haruhiko Kuroda, the governor of the Bank of Japan, announced the plan of the bank to start experiments with central bank digital currency (CBDC) later in 2021, Reuters reports. According to the source, this does not mean that the bank will issue the digital yen. However, this step is to ensure the preparations are in place in case of the need for issuing digital currency.
In an announcement from October 2020, the Bank of Japan outlined its approach to preparations for the issuance of CBDC. It explained the steps as a way to making the payment system more efficient and responsive to change.
Several other banks around the world are at different stages in their CBDC rollout process. In particular, a survey conducted at the end of 2019 by the Bank for International Settlements (BIS) found that 80% of participating central banks (66 surveyed) had CBDC in the works.
For instance, in South Korea, Shinhan Bank completed a pilot of the digital won, in preparation for the CBDC rollout by the central bank. Moreover, the central bank of Jamaica is planning to pilot the CBDC in December 2021 before the launch in 2022. In addition, the digital yuan is scheduled to launch before the Winter Olympic Games in 2022.