The Bahamas is standing as one of the key pioneers when it comes to its pursuit of a national digital currency. In accordance with this, the Central Bank of Bahamas has incorporated the Sand Dollar, its Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) into its official central bank balance sheets. The Central Bank of Bahamas sent out an annual report for 2019, and it shows that there’s $48,000 in Sand Dollar currently in circulation.
Expanding Its CBDC
Its report went into detail, explaining that the regulator had revealed the pilot for its new CBDC by launching it in Exuma, one of the districts in the Bahamas, back in December of 2019. In February of 2020, this pilot program had extended to Abaco, as well.
Through this initiative, it’s expected to provide the Bahamas with an interoperable, modernized infrastructure for payments that can be accessed by all of its residents. This comes according to the bank in its report. As the report details, the Sand Dollar would allow for micro-small and medium-sized enterprises to completely digitize their payment system. Alongside this, it would enable universal access to banking services to residents, aid in money laundering suppression, and reduce unrecorded economic activities. Alongside this, other illegal acts more easily done with cash can also be reduced.
In tandem with its new pilot program, the balance sheet of the regulator had revealed that it had issued out $48,000 in Sand Dollar to various retail outlets as part of its pilot program.
Just a month ago, this Caribbean nation was seeking to build a new financial system, one that is capable of weathering the natural disasters it so frequently experiences. A key example of this would be Hurricane Dorian, which slammed into the nation back in September of last year. Dorian stood as a Category 5 hurricane, and claimed 3,000 lives alongside $3.4 billion in various losses. As the Bahamian government rebuilds after Dorian, it’s seeking to make use of the Sand Dollar to turn its financial system into one resilient enough to withstand this sort of crisis.
Massive Demand For Sand Dollar
It was just earlier this year when the Central Bank revealed that it had experienced an overwhelming level of demand for the Sand Dollar from the public at large. The bank had an initial target of 500 participants within the pilot project of the Exuma district. However, the bank gained a staggering 1,200 participants that enrolled, instead.