India’s central bank, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), has revealed that 50,000 users and 5,000 merchants are now using its central bank digital currency (CBDC). Digital rupee transactions are currently processed by eight banks, with five more banks set to join the pilot soon, said RBI Deputy Governor T. Rabi Sankar.

Digital Rupee Now Has 50,000 Users

Reserve Bank of India (RBI) Deputy Governor T. Rabi Sankar said Wednesday that the central bank’s digital currency pilot has reached its first milestones.

The RBI official revealed that India’s central bank digital currency (CBDC) now has 50,000 users and is accepted by 5,000 merchants. The retail digital rupee pilot, which began on Dec. 1 last year, is taking place in five Indian cities but the central bank plans to gradually add nine more cities. So far, about 770,000 digital rupee transactions have been processed by eight banks. The RBI plans to add five more banks to the pilot soon.

The central banker emphasized that the Reserve Bank of India intends to move forward cautiously with the digital rupee initiative to prevent taking actions without a full understanding of their potential impact.

“We have our targets in terms of users, in terms of merchants. We will go slowly,” he stressed, elaborating:

We want the process to happen, but we want the process to happen gradually and slowly. We are in no hurry to make something happen so quickly.

India’s largest retailer, Reliance Retail, announced last week that it plans to accept payments in digital rupees. The retail chain has partnered with ICICI Bank, Kotak Mahindra Bank, and fintech Innoviti Technologies to add support for the central bank’s digital currency in its gourmet store line Freshpik across the country.

According to the Atlantic Council’s CBDC tracker, 114 countries, representing over 95% of global GDP, are currently exploring a central bank digital currency.

RBI Still Skeptical of Cryptocurrencies

Meanwhile, India’s central bank has continued to recommend a complete ban on cryptocurrencies, including bitcoin and ether. RBI Governor Shaktikanta Das has warned that cryptocurrencies are a risk to the country’s financial system and will cause the next financial crisis if they are not banned.

Moreover, the RBI governor said last month that “cryptocurrency does not have any underlying value,” warning that “It will undermine the authority of the RBI and lead to the dollarisation of the economy.” Other RBI officials have similarly cautioned that crypto could lead to the dollarization of a part of India’s economy “which will be against the country’s sovereign interest.”

Tags in this story

What do you think about the progress of the digital rupee pilot? Let us know in the comments section below.

Kevin Helms

A student of Austrian Economics, Kevin found Bitcoin in 2011 and has been an evangelist ever since. His interests lie in Bitcoin security, open-source systems, network effects and the intersection between economics and cryptography.

Image Credits: Shutterstock, Pixabay, Wiki Commons

Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only. It is not a direct offer or solicitation of an offer to buy or sell, or a recommendation or endorsement of any products, services, or companies. does not provide investment, tax, legal, or accounting advice. Neither the company nor the author is responsible, directly or indirectly, for any damage or loss caused or alleged to be caused by or in connection with the use of or reliance on any content, goods or services mentioned in this article.

Read disclaimer

Articles You May Like

Elon Musk defies gravity
Putin sets out Ukraine ceasefire conditions
Sunak refuses to change Tory strategy after Reform ‘crossover’ poll
What I learnt from your open-ended wisdom on closed-ended funds
Less meat on menus and fewer new venues: how the Olympics is trying to go green