Jurisdictions Where Retail CBDC Is Being Explored (10/25/2021)

Jurisdictions Where Retail CBDC Is Being Explored (as of October 25, 2021)

Where central banks have launched or piloted (or soon will)

Bahamas (launched)

Jamaica (pilot launch imminent)

China (pilot launched)

Nigeria (pilot launched)

Eastern Caribbean (launched)

Uruguay (pilot completed)

Where central banks have done proofs of concepts (or soon will)

Bhutan (proof of concept planned)

Korea (proof of concept started)

Japan (proof of concept started)

Sweden (proof of concept underway)

Ghana (2021)(update; 2021)

Ukraine (proof of concept done)

Where central banks are in advanced stages of research and development

Canada (update)

Russia (latest report)

Euro Area


Mauritius (update)

United Kingdom


United States

Where central banks are still in the exploratory stages (with year of last update)

Australia (2021)

Kenya (2020)

Brazil (2021)(update, 2021)

Kuwait (2019)

Chile (2021)

Madagascar (2021)

Curaçao en Sint Maarten (2018)

Malaysia (2021)

Czech Republic (2021)

Morocco (2019)(update 2021)

Denmark (2017)

New Zealand (2021)

Eswatini (2020)

Pakistan (2021)

Georgia (2021)(update; 2021)

Peru (2019)

Haiti (Bitkòb)(2021)

Philippines (2020)

Hong Kong SAR (2021)

South Africa (2021)

Hungary (2021)

Switzerland (2019)

Iceland (2018)

Taiwan (2020)

India (2021)

Trinidad and Tobago (2021)

Indonesia (2020)(update; 2021)

Tunisia (2018)

Israel (2021)(update; 2021)

Turkey (2021)

Kazakhstan (2021)


Where central banks have explored or are exploring issuing retail CBDC

(according to reputable sources)

Bahrain (2018)

Lebanon (2020)

Egypt (2018)

Macau (2021)

Guatemala (2021)

Palestine (2021)

Honduras (2021)

Rwanda (2021)

Iran (2018)

United Arab Emirates (2021)

Laos (2021)

Viet Nam (2021)

Where central banks have launched and discontinued

Ecuador (2014-2018)

Finland (1992-2006)

Sources: Central banks or various news sources per hyperlinks above, the Bank for International Settlements CBDC database and CBDCTracker.org.

Note: Retail CBDC is a broadly available general purpose digital payment instrument, denominated in the jurisdiction’s unit of account, that is a direct liability of the jurisdiction’s monetary authority. This table does not cover wholesale CBDC, which is limited to a set of predefined user groups, typically financial institutions.

Recent papers that focus on the practical aspects of CBDC issuance:

Kiff, J., J. Alwazir, S. Davidovic, A. Farias, A. Khan, T. Khiaonarong, M. Malaika, H.K. Monroe, N. Sugimoto, H. Tourpe, and P. Zhou. 2020. “A Survey of Research on Retail Central Bank Digital Currency,” IMF Working Paper No. 20/104.

Adrian, T., and T. Mancini-Griffoli. 2019a. “The Rise of Digital Money,” IMF Fintech Note 19/01.

Auer, R. and R. Boehme. 2021. “Central Bank Digital Currency: The Quest for Minimally Invasive Technology,” Bank for International Settlements Working Paper No. 948, June.

Auer, R., G. Cornelliand J. Frost. 2020. “Rise of the Central Bank Digital Currencies: Drivers, Approaches and Technologies,” Bank for International Settlements Working Paper No. 880, August.

Bank for International Settlements. 2020. “Central Bank Digital Currencies: Foundational Principles and Core Features,” October.

Bank of England. 2020. “Central Bank Digital Currency: Opportunities, Challenges and Design,” Discussion Paper, March.

Bindseil, U. 2020. “Tiered CBDC and the Financial System,” European Central Bank Working Paper No. 2351, January.

Bossu, W., M. Itatani, C. Margulis, A. Rossi, H. Weeninkand A. Yoshinaga. 2020. “Legal Aspects of Central Bank Digital Currency: Central Bank and Monetary Law Considerations,” IMF Working Paper No. 20/254.

Brookings Institution. 2020. "Design Choices for Central Bank Digital Currency: Policy and Technical Considerations," Global Economy & Development Working Paper 140, July.

European Central Bank. 2019. “Exploring Anonymity in Central Bank Digital Currencies,” ECB In Focus, December.

—-. 2020. “Report on a Digital Euro,” October.

Shah, D., R. Arora, H. Du, S. Darbha, J. Miedema, and C. Minwalla. 2020. “Technology Approach for a CBDC,” Bank of Canada Staff Analytical Note 2020-6.

Sveriges Riksbank. 2020. Economic Review: Second Special Issue on the E-Krona.

World Economic Forum. 2020. Central Bank Digital Currency Policy-Maker Toolkit. And the WEF’s Ashley Lannquist maintains the ultimate CBDC reading list here!

20 thoughts on “Jurisdictions Where Retail CBDC Is Being Explored (10/25/2021)

  1. Thanks Martynas, I've been wringing my hands over the Lithuania digital collector coin. It meets one of my retail CBDC definition criteria – it's issued by a central bank. However, it does not seem to be a direct digital representation of the country's intended to be legal tender, which in this case is the euro. I believe that only the ECB will be able to issue Lithuania's legal tender.

  2. That's a very good point, but you'll notice that I don't include other Euro Zone countries that are doing CBDC research in the table (eg France, Netherlands and Spain) because I cover them in the "Euro Zone" link. In fact I have a beef with the latest BIS CBDC survey paper that counts those three countries plus the ECB in their "30" jurisdiction CBDC survey: https://www.bis.org/publ/work880.htm. For me it's a survey of 27 jurisdictions.

  3. The Cambodian central bank launched a distributed ledger technology (DLT) based retail payment system but it doesn’t involve any form of central bank digital currency (CBDC). In other words, you won’t find a CBDC entry on the central bank balance sheet, because the system doesn’t require one. And the standard definition of a retail CBDC is a digital (not necessarily DLT based) representation of the country’s fiat currency issued by and on the balance sheet of the central bank intended for use by the general public as legal tender.The Republic of Marshall Island (RMI) SOV doesn’t meet that definition because the RMI doesn’t have a central bank because it uses the US dollar as its legal tender. It will be issued by the government so it’s more of a sovereign digital currency.As for Bermuda, I believe that the central bank may have given its blessing to a private sector stablecoin-like retail payment system some years ago, but as far as I know the Bermudan central bank has never Piloted or issued a retail CBDC, or even seriously considered it. The government recently issued a digital stimulus payment token, but also made a big point that their central bank was not considering issuing CBDC: https://www.coindesk.com/bermuda-stimulus-token

  4. Thanks for that info. I’ve heard the same thing but have yet to find a credible link. I prefer a link to something on the central bank website, but a link to a reputable news source would do. Do you have such a link? There are about a half dozen central banks that I know are exploring CBDC but they’re in stealth mode so I can’t name or include them in the table.

  5. I don’t see UAE and KSA Pls check this linkhttps://www.centralbank.ae/sites/default/files/2020-11/Aber%20Report%202020%20-%20EN_4.pdf

  6. Thanks Yusuf, but I believe that the UAE/KSA Project Aber involved wholesale CBDC (used solely for interbank settlement), whereas I focus only on retail CBDC meant (for general public use). That's why, for example, I don't list France separately, even though the Banque de France wholesale CBDC experiments are very exciting.

  7. Some day I may expand the tabulation to include wholesale CBDC but they're a whole different beast. I'd even have to think about a totally different definition of CBDC. Not only does the "widely accessible" disappear, but I think I'd have to add that they are based on distributed ledger technology (DLT) because I think we effectively already have central ledger-based CBDC in every central bank-run wholesale payment system. It's really the DLT that makes wholesale CBDC special, whereas retail CBDC can be run on a centralized ledger or no ledger at all (ie token-based).

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