Japan's megabanks to lead experiment with digital yen

Japan's megabanks to lead experiment with digital yen

Japan’s three largest banks, as part of a group of 30 private sector actors, are set to collaborate on an experiment with a digital yen. The group consists of banks, various Japanese brokerages, utilities and telecoms firms and retailers, according to a Reuters report published on Nov. 19.

For the purposes of the experiment, the private banks will be responsible for issuing the currency, although the prospect of other actors becoming involved in issuance has not been ruled out, according to the chair of the new group, Hiromi Yamaoka. Yamaoka is a former executive at Japan’s central bank, which itself has been increasingly vocal on the question of the digital yen’s development in recent months.

Japan is well-known for being slow to take up cashless payments: cash continues to account for roughly 80% of total settlement in the country, compared to 55% in the United States and just 30% in China.

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Whereas Japan’s leading banks, Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group, Mizuho

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