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IRN | Sep 24, 2022

Iran begins CBDC foray with ‘Crypto Rial’ pilot

/ Our Today

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Representations of cryptocurrency Bitcoin are seen in front of an Iranian flag in this illustration taken, July 7, 2022. (Photo: REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustrations)

Durrant Pate/Contributor

With much anticipation, the Central Bank of Iran (CBI) has begun a pilot for its central bank digital currency (CBDC), also known as the “Crypto Rial.”

The pilot officially started earlier this week with much optimism in the country about cryptocurrency trading. Iran’s chamber of commerce has explained that the “Crypto Rial has been designed in a way that is easy to track, and even if the data on the smartphones are hacked, the Crypto Rial can be tracked.”

The CBI announced on September 21 that Friday it will begin the pilot launch of Crypto Rial. The CBI previously explained that “the aim of designing the Crypto Rial is to turn banknotes into a programmable entity,” with it being a digital version of the country’s national currency.

Crypto Rial’s high security

One of the main features of this central bank digital currency is its high security. Iran’s government recently approved a “comprehensive and detailed” regulatory framework for cryptocurrency.

Al Jazeera reports that the Crypto Rial will work on the Borna stage, created utilising the Hyperledger Texture, an IBM open-source circulated record innovation stage. Banks will exchange paper rials for electronic ones.

Since the stage is permissioned, the national bank will choose banks to take part. The utilisation of digital money for instalments inside Iran is restricted, yet in August, Iranians started to utilise crypto to pay for imports, prompting worries among Iranian organisations about the absence of cryptographic money guidelines. 

The authorities have resumed licensing crypto miners under the new regulatory framework. Earlier this month, Alireza Peymanpak, vice-minister of Iran’s Ministry of Industry and Trade and president of the Trade Promotion Organization (TPO), said the first official import order was successfully placed with cryptocurrency worth $10 million.

An official reported that “by the end of September, the use of cryptocurrencies and smart contracts will be widespread in foreign trade with target countries.”   

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