The central bank of Ghana (BoG) is gearing up towards the development of a central bank digital currency (CBDC) by partnering with a German currency technology provider. The central bank officially announced this week that it signed an agreement with German banknote and securities printing company Giesecke+Devrient (G+D) to pilot a retail CBDC in Ghana, West Africa.
G+D will provide its proprietary CBDC solution.
As part of the agreement between the Bank of Ghana and the German firm, G+D will provide its proprietary CBDC solution known as Filia to pilot the issuance of a digital form of Ghana’s national currency, the cedi. The digital currency will be tested in a trial with local banks, merchants, payment service providers, and consumers, as well as other related parties. The project is part of Ghana’s digitization strategy, the “Digital Ghana Agenda,” aimed at digitizing data and government services for the country of 30 million people. Dubbed as e-cedi, the digital cedi aims to complement the country’s traditional national currency as a digital alternative.
CBDC should facilitate payments without a bank account.
According to the central bank’s official announcement, the CBDC should facilitate payments without a bank account, contract or smartphone. BoG governor Ernest Addison said that the e-cedi provides a great opportunity to create a “robust, inclusive, competitive and sustainable financial sector, led by the central bank.” “From all indications, the concept has a significant role to play in the future of financial service delivery globally. This project is a significant step towards positioning the West African country to take full advantage of this emerging concept,” he added. Central banks across countries are actively working on CBDCs.