Jamaica’s central bank minted the country’s first batch of central bank digital currencies (CBDCs) on Monday.
Jamaica has become the latest country to push for the wider adoption of these assets, following El Salvador’s decision to switch to a Bitcoin economy and China picking up the pace of development of its e-yuan.
Jamaica finds itself leading the digital transformation in banking and currencies.
A total of $1.5m CBDCs were minted in Jamaica earlier this week and the bank will use them as a litmus test of a potentially bigger rollout.
The pilot program that was launched on Monday will run through December to assess the impact on the economy.
On Tuesday, Minister of Finance Dr Nigel Clarke vowed that the country would pass a legislative amendment that adds more clarity to CBDCs and their use before the fiscal year is out.
The central bank wanted to start the test in May but was delayed for reasons that were not disclosed.
The country is working together with eCurrency Mint an Irish company that specializes in the production of new digital currencies.
Jamaica believes that switching its money to a digital format is vital for the economy and society, especially with a global pandemic raging on.
The central bank believes that the introduction of digital currencies will make the processing of payments much simpler, as well as improve management processes while slashing costs.
Cryptocurrencies are already used with success in places such as digital casinos, which accept Bitcoin, Ethereum, Dogecoin and many others. Websites such as Bitcasino.io, 1xBit, and FortuneJack are examples of success.