February 1, 2023

The Central Bank of Saudi Arabia is continuing the project to test the central bank digital currency as it is currently working in collaboration with banks and fintech companies operating in the Kingdom on one of the phases of the project related to case studies on the use of the central bank digital currency allocated to financial institutions at the local level.

This project is in line with many global central bank digital currency initiatives and is one of the ongoing efforts of the Central Bank of Saudi Arabia to explore and test a central bank digital currency. At this stage, the Central Bank of Saudi Arabia aims to study the economic impact, market readiness and possible efficient and fast applications for payment solutions using the central bank digital currency, in addition to studying policy, legal and regulatory issues, before proceeding to the next stages of the project. to contribute to the Kingdom Vision 2030 Goals.

Saudi Central Bank Governor Dr. Fahd bin Abdullah Al Mubarak stated that local banks and payment companies are an indispensable cornerstone of this project and its implementation, referring in this regard to the involvement of local banks and financial technology companies in the current stage of the project, in in addition to the participation of other market participants, as well as third-party advisory and technical service providers, in order to learn more about the functions of the digital currency and test various design options.

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The Central Bank of Saudi Arabia will continue to explore the central bank digital currency while consulting with relevant international agencies, local governments and the public. The Central Bank will also continue to test the digital currency, given that it is one of the possible infrastructure elements that support innovation in the financial services industry, in addition to the ability of the digital currency to help strengthen the payment system and accelerate the digital transformation into the financial sector in the kingdom.

The Central Bank of Saudi Arabia confirms that no decision has been made to start using a central bank digital currency in the Kingdom, but continues its work and is currently focused on exploring the potential benefits and risks of using a digital currency, which will undoubtedly contribute to informed decisions within the Central Bank. Bank of Saudi Arabia and will enrich the global results associated with the use of these currencies at the level of central banks.

It is worth noting that the Central Bank of Saudi Arabia previously managed to test a central bank digital currency under the Aber project in 2019, which is an initiative launched in cooperation with the Central Bank of the United Arab Emirates. Explore the extent to which distributed ledger technology can be used to facilitate cross-border payments.

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