The Central Bank of the United Arab Emirates (CBUAE) announced that it has completed bridge, the world’s largest pilot of central bank digital currencies (CBDC) transactions, with other regulators including the Digital Currency Institute of the People’s Bank of China.
The other partners include the Hong Kong Monetary Authority, the Bank of Thailand, and the Bank for International Settlements, the CBUAE said in a statement.
According to the CBUAE, commercial banks in the four jurisdictions wielded the bridge platform to conduct over 160 payment and foreign exchange transactions totaling over $22 million over six weeks.
CBUAE’s six-week pilot project was conducted with the Hong Kong Monetary Authority, the Bank of Thailand, the Digital Currency Institute of the People’s Bank of China and the Bank for International Settlements.
The pilot project witnessed commercial banks in four jurisdictions use mBridge for 160 payment and foreign exchange transactions amounting to more than $21.78 million.
Khaled Mohamed Balama, CBUAE’s governor, said that the project is part of CBUAE’s plan to support UAE competitiveness, diversity, and growth of the financial sector in line with forthcoming economic trends.
He added that the CBUAE will continue to set up proper administration framework for interoperable CBDCs to deliver factual benefits to UAE companies and consumers.
In November 2021, reporting on the initiative’s progress, the CBUAE said that 22 project participants from all four jurisdictions identified 15 possible business test cases to assess the mBridge.
Trial Platform’s ability to improve real-world cross-border payments. The identified business test cases cover transactions across eleven industries (amounting to $270 million) to be tested on the bridge Trial Platform.
According to the CBUAE, five banks located in the UAE comprising First Abu Dhabi Bank, Emirates NBD, Dubai Islamic Bank, HSBC, and Standard Chartered Bank, took part in some of the 15 cases. International trade settlement was put first in the identified business test cases given the high volume of trade between the four jurisdictions, resulting in $731 billion.
MBrisde provides an efficient, regulatory-compliant, and scalable cross-border payment solution with CBDCs at its beginning, constructed to regulate around different jurisdictions and currencies.
CBUAE said that the project mBridge ascertained faster, cost-effective, and secure cross-border monetary settlements using central bank money, identified as a G20 economic priority.