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The non-profit Human Rights Foundation (HRF) has launched a central bank digital currency (CBDC) tracker, which the organization announced at the same Oslo Freedom House event it hosts. The online tracker published tutorials and a line of tips. It is expected to be fully functional by the end of the year.
The tracker came about as a result of an eight-month internship at HRF, which was announced in January. The fellowship was awarded to Cato Institute analyst Nick Anthony, researcher Janine Romer, and podcaster Matthew Mezinskis. The Cato Institute is a vocal opponent of the CBDC.
HRF Chief Strategy Officer Alex Gladstein said in a promotional video about the tracker:
“This will be an online resource describing the development of central bank digital currencies around the world, especially in authoritarian countries, as well as the civil liberties wake-up calls and risks associated with it.”
Because the CBDC is a central bank obligation, it “creates a direct link between citizens and the central bank,” which “opens the door for many human rights issues when it comes to adopting a CBDC,” according to the CBDC tracker on the HRF website.
The first phase of the @HRF CBDC Tracker is now live!
Just announced at the Oslo Freedom Forum, the full resource will be unveiled at the end of the year.
For now, check out the landing page (phase 1) here: https://t.co/OrZ2fNfy7l pic.twitter.com/FHB9DWXDqs
— Nick Anthony (@EconWithNick) June 13, 2023
HRF is an active supporter of Bitcoin (BTC). Gladstein has told Cointelegraph in the past that Bitcoin “fixes democracy” and can prevent wars.
Related: 7 Central Banks and BIS Continue to Explore Current Policy Issues for Retail CBDC
According to the unrelated CBDC Tracker website, the vast majority of the world’s central banks are in some stage of CBDC research, but only three CBDCs have been launched so far. These are the Bahamas sand dollar, the Jamaican Jam-Dex and eNaira in Nigeria. The website also lists 14 pilot projects, including the e-CNY Chinese digital yuan. According to HRF, the digital yuan already has 300 million users.