The Bank of Ghana announced the piloting of eCedi, a Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) by issuing a 32-page Design Paper of the Digital Cedi (eCedi).
Governor of the Bank of Ghana, Dr. Ernest Addison noted in the design paper that “Ghana’s CBDC project is tailored to needs as stated in its policy objectives. To better identify such needs, BoG conducted comprehensive research on the issue, the results of which has informed the effective design solution for the eCedi. It is envisaged that the digital currency will dovetail with the existing payment landscape of Ghana. Bank of Ghana therefore would extensively engage stakeholders to the extent possible for their active participation and successful implementation. This paper gives an overview of the motivations of issuing the eCedi, the potential benefits for stakeholders, the design principles of the eCedi, including the governance, accessibility,interoperability, requisite infrastructure and security”
The governor calls for participation “We encourage all Ghanaians to jointly support the eCedi pilot project towards a future stable, digitally advanced, and innovative financial system for Ghana,”
The 32-page Design Paper gives an overview of the motivations for issuing the eCedi, the potential benefits for stakeholders, the design principles of the eCedi, including the governance, accessibility, interoperability, requisite infrastructure and security.
The central bank of Ghana, Design paper of the digital Cedi (eCedi) is organized into seven chapters:
- Chapters 1- 6 contain its vision, key concept, an overview of the Ghanaian payment landscape, key motivation for issuing the eCedi, and potential benefits for stakeholders (Consumers, Banks, FinTech, Merchants, Government, BoG)
- Chapters 6 and 7 provided details on payment scenarios with the eCedi and design principles of the eCedi (Governance, Two-tier architecture, eCedi compliance with AML/CFT, Monitoring and reporting, Accessibility, Accessible to anyone, trusted by everyone, Offline functionality, Fees model, Interoperability, eCedi interconnecting with existing infrastructures, Cross border perspectives, Programmability of payments, Infrastructure, Highest IT security standards, and Resilience, availability, and scalability. The document ended for call for public discourse.
On the issue of cryptocurrency it indicates “The scrutiny of Big Tech companies (for instance, Apple, Facebook, or Amazon) in regard to providing payment services and issuing private digital currencies is a significant challenge for regulators nowadays. Such global private “currencies, “as well as locally issued cryptocurrencies, provoke a wide range of risks, including monetary, legal, operational, consumer protection, and financial stability. Digital currency issued and guaranteed by the central bank would meet the demand for digital currencies without posing systemic risks”.
In the next coming years, it will be interesting will see the implication of eCedi on cryptocurrency