Honduras and Guatemala Central Banks study CBDCs
With Bitcoin debuting in El Salvador, another two Central American countries – Honduras and Guatemala, are considering the adoption of cryptocurrencies, although in a totally different manner.
Both the countries, unlike El Salvador, are exploring central bank digital currencies (CBDCs). After a formal approval of its central bank board of directors, Honduras’ Central Bank has initiated a study for determining the feasibility of a pilot test to issue its own digital money.
Wilfredo Cerrato, central bank President of Honduras, stated that as the topmost monetary authority in the region, Consejo Monetario Centroamericano (Central American Monetary Council) must consider the rising adoption of digital wallets and should actively address the adoption of digital currencies as a response.
The statement was made given that the northwestern area of the region has also named their CBDC. Vice President of Banco de Guatemala, Jose Alfredo Blanco, had informed the public that similar to the fiat currency, their digital currency — iQuetzal — is set to be named after the national bird of Guatemala.
Despite both Honduras and Guatemala’s consideration for CBDCs in a pilot project, their central banks are not ready to integrate a new currency into their financial systems without being sufficiently prepared.
Blanco emphasized that the central bank’s research committee for studying the CBDC has been constituted only six months back, and it is still too early to reach a conclusion. For now, it would take “a long time” for the bank to complete its investigation phase.
Recently, CBDCs have been gaining massive traction around the globe. Nigeria’s CBDC, eNaira, is slated for launch on October 1, marking the country’s 61st Independence Day. The Ukrainian government has also announced plans to launch its CBDC, giving the National Bank of Ukraine the authority for issuing a digital currency.