Mastercard announced it is preparing to integrate cryptocurrencies into its loyalty program offerings for United States-based banks, merchants and fintech firms on its payment network. It would be working with digital asset platform Bakkt to allow its customers based in the United States to buy, sell and hold digital assets through custodial wallets. The partnership will also enable cardholders to earn and spend rewards in crypto rather than using loyalty points and accruing or redeeming tokens for purchases. [Read more]
The European Central Bank (ECB) announced the members of the Market Advisory Group for the digital euro project. The Eurosystem’s High-Level Task Force on Central Bank Digital Currency called for expressions of interest on 14 July, following the Governing Council’s approval of the digital euro project investigation phase. After assessing applications, the selection committee appointed 30 senior business professionals with proven experience and a broad understanding of the euro area retail payments market. Meetings are to be held at least quarterly, starting in November 2021, and written consultations will be organised between meetings. The issues identified will also be considered in the Eurosystem’s established forum for institutional dialogue on retail payments, the Euro Retail Payments Board (ERPB). [Read more]
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) launched its eNaira central bank digital currency (CBDC) on Monday, October 24. The launch had been originally scheduled for October 1, but it was delayed in deference to other key activities lined up to commemorate the country’s 61st Independence Anniversary. However, Nigerians have been able to download the eNaira app from either the Google Play or Apple App stores since late September. The CBN also published a white paper that provides detail on the eNaira’s critical dimensions. [Read more]
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