Irish firm Accenture to oversee 5 ‘digital dollar’ pilots in the U.S.
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Irish firm Accenture is to oversee five digital currency pilots in the United States, the company announced on Monday. The project, called Digital Money, is a collaboration between Accenture and U.S. Treasury’s FinTech Innovation Lab, with an aim of developing “innovative digital solutions for the U.S. market”. The project, part of a broader US government program called LabCFTC, will launch in the summer and will purportedly see Accenture act as a “regulator and technology provider”.
Accenture, a global management consulting, technology services and outsourcing company, which has an office in Cork city, Ireland, will oversee and manage five pilots across the United States that will test the use of blockchain technology for digital payments. The company has been contracted by the U.S. Department of Treasury’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), to develop the program. FinCEN is the U.S. agency responsible for ensuring the security of the U.S. financial system.
Digital Dollar Project, the nonprofit co-founded by former Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CTFC) chairman Christopher Giancarlo, plans to launch five pilot programs targeting central bank digital currencies (CBDCs) in the next 12 months, according to a Reuters report published yesterday.
As FRB President Powell said, the goal of the U.S. #CBDC is not to be the first, and we have pilot projects in place to support this mission. #DigitalDollarProject https://t.co/MTDnwoY3st https://t.co/6eD8Lil17w
– Chris Giancarlo (@giancarloMKTS) 3. May 2021
The aim of the pilot projects is to explore different aspects of the digital dollar, as well as functional, sociological and commercial use cases.
Three of these programs will launch in the next two months, adding their findings to the data already available from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, which is working with the Federal Reserve on a similar project.
Weekly conferences are held around the world and reports are published on the CBDC with data from other countries. What is lacking is actual data and tests from the United States that could inform this debate. Our goal is to get that real data, Giancarlo says.
A digital dollar?
The Digital Dollar Project was launched last year as a result of a partnership between Irish multinational consulting and processing company Accenture and the Digital Dollar Foundation.
Working with financial firms, retailers and non-governmental organizations, the initiative aims to collect all types of CBDC data to help policymakers in the U.S. develop and implement a digital dollar.
It is essential that the United States continues to play its leadership role in technological innovation, as it has in the past, Giancarlo said, commenting on CBDC’s recent success in China.
Creation of CBDCs
As mentioned, many central banks around the world are skeptical of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, but many have stated that CBDCs are a much better solution for digital payments.
For example, a survey by the Bank for International Settlements found that 80% of the world’s 66 central banks are exploring digital currency technology and that about 20% of them are likely to issue digital currency in the next six years.
Meanwhile, experts from the International Monetary Fund have also noted that CBDCs are not a threat to bitcoin – on the contrary, their success could depend on the cryptocurrency.
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