Thai authorities are reportedly in no rush to push for a retail-oriented central bank digital currency (CBDC). The governor of the Bank of Thailand explained that the country has several alternative payment options.
The need to roll out CBDCs is not so high
Thailand has been one of the countries willing to introduce CBDCs. In 2020, the country’s central bank said it would test how the financial product interacts with local businesses. Additionally, Assistant Governor of the Bank of Thailand Vachira Aromadi said that the institution plans to expand the use of CBDCs to the general public.
Late last year, officials revealed their intention to use the national digital currency as an alternative payment option to cash. However, attempts were made to pass some experiments rescheduled for the end of 2022.
According to a recent local report, the governor of the central bank, Sethaput Suthivartanruput – is satisfied with the way Thailand’s existing retail banking network is working. “The need to roll out a CBDC is not that much,” he claimed.
The official reiterated the bank’s plans to conduct its trial run on the financial product during Q4, 2022. The initiative will be supported by monetary organizations and private consumers who will make withdrawals, deposits and fund transfers.
Suthivartanruput further said that domestic investors who trade digital assets through registered platforms will be eligible for 7% VAT exemption on their transactions. The program will run from April 1, 2022 to December 31, 2023, and aims to encourage the use of authorized crypto exchanges.
Crypto is banned as a payment method in Thailand
The Asian country has a controversial approach to the digital asset industry. Last year, the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) intended to design a utility token called the TAT coin. The product will enable the transfer of vouchers and help tour operators gain more liquidity. It will also aim to attract crypto owners who can settle into the land of smiles and stimulate their economy in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pullback.
Despite showing sympathy for TAT, Thailand is not so supportive of cryptocurrencies like BTC and altcoins. Last month, officials warned that they could harm the financial network. As such, their use as a means of payment was restricted until April 1, 2022.
However, trading and investing in crypto is allowed, which is good news for many domestic HODLers. According to Bloomberg coverage, Thais have over $3 billion in digital assets.
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