The Bank of Israel, the country’s central bank, has issued a pilot of its central bank digital currency (CBDC), Andrew Abir, the institution’s deputy governor, has announced.
According to him, although the bank has already initiated a pilot program for its digital shekel, he does not believe the institution will end up launching the currency officially despite ongoing tests.
Speaking at a conference of the Fair Value Forum of IDC Herzliya, Abir said:
“I had previously estimated that the chance of having a CBDC within five years is 20%. My estimate has increased a bit in the last year, mainly because other countries are advancing with it too, but still there is less than a 50% chance.”
It is worth noting that despite the bank’s deputy governor’s statements, the Bank of Israel has not made any official publication on its website.
The bank’s last statements regarding a possible central bank digital currency (CBDC) were made last month, when the institution said it was preparing an action plan to study the benefits of a CBDC in the Israeli economy.
At the time, the bank said it would consider issuing a CBDC if it meets the needs of the future digital economy and provides more efficient cross-border payments.