HKMA launches pioneering e-HKD pilot for innovative FinTech solutions


The Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) has initiated an e-HKD retail Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) pilot scheme.

The scheme will see 16 firms from the financial, payments, and technology sectors participating in the first round of trials this year. HKMA’s e-HKD pilot will explore six potential use cases, including full-fledged payments, programmable payments, offline payments, tokenised deposits, settlement of Web3 transactions, and settlement of tokenised assets.

While the decision on a retail CBDC is yet to be finalised, HKMA chief executive Eddie Yue noted that the e-HKD pilot provides an excellent opportunity for HKMA to join forces with the industry in probing innovative use cases and enhancing preparedness for a potential e-HKD.

The e-HKD pilot forms a significant part of Rail 2, which falls under HKMA’s three-rail strategy for the possible deployment of a retail CBDC. Each pilot’s outcomes and insights will further enhance HKMA’s perspective and hone its approach towards the possible implementation of e-HKD.

HKMA also intends to create a CBDC Expert Group, bringing together academics from local universities, to facilitate collaboration between government, industry, and academia.

HKMA chief executive Eddie Yue said, “the e-HKD pilot serves as a tremendous opportunity for the HKMA to collaborate with the industry in exploring innovative use cases and maximising our readiness for a potential e-HKD”.

Recently, the Digital Currency Monetary Authority (DCMA) launched its CBDC which it claims it strengthens the monetary sovereignty of participating central banks.

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