Could blockchain be the key that will open the door to a cashless society? That’s what the Reserve Bank of India is banking on.
India is considered to be one of the largest cash dependent nations in the world, which, in turn, has created a challenge for the Indian central bank to find ways to ensure that the country’s monetary system remains liquid. So far, the Reserve Bank of India has been printing more currency notes in exchange for the old banknotes that have been put out of commission.
This time, however, the central bank is planning to look into other ways—such as blockchain—as a possible solution to reduce the use of paper currency.
Reserve Bank of India deputy governor HR Khan said the central bank is forming a committee that will study the use of blockchain, telling the Times of India: “Blockchain is one thing that has come out of bitcoin which provides a lot of flexibility in terms of financial transactions. So, we need to study… how this blockchain technology can be used in financial transactions where the entire data systems move to some more levels.”
India is the latest nation to have expressed interest in the technology that involve the technology that supports the popular digital currency bitcoin, albeit for different purposes.
Last week, the Bank of Canada announced it is testing how blockchain can be used for interbank payments, although the central bank stressed that “it has no plans” to come up with a digitized version of the Canadian dollar.
Another country that is experimenting with the blockchain is Sweden. The Scandinavian country is working with several blockchain-related companies to place the Swedish land registry on the blockchain, which involves putting real estate transactions on the ledger system where anyone from banks, the government, brokers, sellers and even buyers can keep track of the progress of the deal.
Current bitcoin price and transaction volume
The price of blockchain’s digital currency was up slightly on Tuesday, registering at $648.17 with close to 15.71 million bitcoins in circulation.