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Canadians are being asked to imagine what features they want included in a potential digital Canadian dollar, with the country’s central bank opening consultations to the public.
On May 8, the Bank of Canada (BoC) began a public consultation that will last until June 19, noting that it is looking into a virtual looney as “the world becomes more digital.”
Bank of Canada Senior Deputy Governor Carolyn Rogers said in a statement that the bank wants to hear what Canadians “value most about the design of the digital dollar” to help it make choices about its security and reliability and to make sure it “meets the needs of Canadians.” “.
Hey Canada, we need your input!
Our public consultation on a potential #DigitalCanadianDollar is now LIVE. #HaveYourSay by June 19: https://t.co/p8BdG3tQ9h pic.twitter.com/vKRoBfAngu
— Bank of Canada (@bankofcanada) May 8, 2023
The bank was quick to say it was not starting work on a central bank digital currency (CBDC) and had no intention of replacing cash if that were to happen.
“Currently, there is no need for a digital Canadian dollar. And any decision to release it remains with the Parliament and the Government of Canada.”
“The cash is not going anywhere,” added the Bank of Canada. However, it states that many Canadians could be excluded from the economy in the future if the use of banknotes declines.
In the event of a CBDC issuance, physical banknotes will still be made available to “those who need them,” the bank said.
The Bank of Canada also pointed to the possibility that cryptocurrencies or foreign CBDCs “may become widespread in Canada.”
It argued that this scenario could threaten the Canadian dollar and “jeopardize the stability of our financial system.”
Related: Retail CBDCs bring unknown ‘consequences’ to financial system – IMF director
The consultation questionnaire asks Canadians a wide range of questions, including the payment methods they have used in the past month, how often they can potentially use a Canadian CBDC, and what design features they want to see.
It also specifically asks if the survey participant uses or owns cryptocurrencies and contains a series of demographic questions about gender, age, education, and income.
The Bank of Canada said it would publish a report summarizing the consultation “later this year.”
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