The Bank of Thailand (BoT) is set to develop a prototype for a wholesale Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) using R3’s Corda platform.
The BoT revealed its plans in a press release on August 21, noting that the development of the upcoming “wholesale” CBDC prototype is the next milestone in Project Inthanon, which aims to “enhance efficiency of the Thai financial market infrastructure.”
A “wholesale” CBDC is designed for use only by financial and government institutions, compared to a “retail” CBDC intended for use by the general public.
According to the press release, the BoT and eight participating banks will “collaboratively design and develop a proof-of-concept prototype for wholesale funds transfer” that will be built on Corda, a Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT) platform developed by R3.
Project Inthanon partners include Bangkok Bank, Krung Thai, Bank of Ayudhya, Kasikornbank, Thanachart Bank, Siam Commercial Bank, Standard Chartered and HSBC.
Results and insights from Project Inthanon “will contribute to the design of Thailand’s future financial market infrastructure.” In addition to Project Inthanon, the BoT is “conducting a DLT proof of concept for a scriptless government savings bond sale to improve operational efficiency.”
The BoT notes that Project Inthanon is “in line with similar projects embarked upon by other central banks such as the Bank of Canada, the Hong Kong Monetary Authority and the Monetary Authority of Singapore.”
An increasing number of central banks around the world are considering a CBDC. Venezuela became the first country to officially roll out a state-backed cryptocurrency called the Petro in February 2018. The Marshall Islands have announced plans to launch a state-backed CBDC by the end of 2018.