Major central bank digital currencies experiment sees positive results

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Valentina Vitali
Valentina Vitali
FXC Intelligence Research Analyst
Valentina is a Research Analyst at FXC Intelligence, the data sister company of FXcompared. Valentina is passionate about payments and fintech. Valentin enjoys analysing money transfer companies and… Read more
  • Three organisations – the Banque de France (BdF), the Bank for International Settlements (BIS) and the Swiss National Bank (SNB) – have announced successful outcomes on a collaboration on a programme called Project Jura.
  • The project allowed participants to settle foreign exchange transactions in both euros and Swiss francs.
  • “Jura demonstrates how wholesale CBDC can optimise cross-currency and cross-border settlements, which are a key facet of international transactions,” said a spokesperson for the Banque de France.

Three leading organisations in the finance world have confirmed that a cross-border payments experiment with central bank digital currencies has been positive.

The Banque de France (BdF), the Bank for International Settlements (BIS) and the Swiss National Bank (SNB) have all worked together on a programme called Project Jura.

This project, which came to a close recently, allowed participants to settle foreign exchange transactions in both euros and Swiss francs.

The companies involved were also able to experiment with euro-denominated ‘French commercial paper’ tokens, which reflected the digitalised nature of central bank digital currencies (CBDCs).

The companies involved in the experiments included Natixis, Accenture and UBS.

The project has been on the go for several years now.

This experiment was carried out in a context close to real life.

It was also designed to adhere to compliance requirements.

In a statement, a senior figure at the Banque de France said that the CBDC experiment programme dated back to last year.

Sylvie Goulard, who is the organisation’s deputy governor, said that it had been a “great success”.

“With the great success of Jura, the wholesale CBDC experiment programme launched by the Banque de France in 2020 is now completed,” she said.

She went on to say that the experiment had revealed just how it might be possible for CBDCs to “optimise” the payments landscape.

“Jura demonstrates how wholesale CBDC can optimise cross-currency and cross-border settlements, which are a key facet of international transactions,” she explained.

For the BIS Innovation Hub, meanwhile, the head there said that the experiment revealed that CBDC was an option for “safe and neutral settlement”.

Benoît Cœuré explained that this relied on it all being “well designed”.

“Project Jura confirms that a well designed wholesale CBDC can play a critical role as a safe and neutral settlement asset for international financial transactions,” he said.

He went on to say that central banks and businesses had a role to play in collaborating to prevent roadblocks to innovation.

“It also demonstrates how central banks and the private sector can work together across borders to foster innovation,” he added.

For the Swiss National Bank, a member of its governing body said that the move reflected the benefits of distributed ledger technology.

“Project Jura explores how distributed ledger technology can be successfully leveraged to map out how future-proof cross-border settlement between financial institutions could look like,” said Andréa M. Maechler.

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