scorecardIndia’s Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman says she expects the central bank to roll out the country’s digital currency this year
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India’s Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman says she expects the central bank to roll out the country’s digital currency this year

India’s Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman says she expects the central bank to roll out the country’s digital currency this year
CryptocurrencyCryptocurrency2 min read
Wikipedia
  • The Indian government expects the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to roll out its digital currency this year.
  • The government of India has had a lot of consultation with the RBI around digital currency, which will be designed by the central bank itself.
  • The Finance Bill of 2022 had also proposed that the Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) “should also be regarded as bank notes”.
The Indian government expects the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to roll out its digital currency this year, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said on Tuesday. “This year we expect the currency to come out from the central bank itself,” she said.

While speaking at India Global Forum, she also mentioned that the government of India has had a lot of consultation with the RBI around digital currency, which will be designed by the central bank itself. She mentioned that the government sees a lot of “advantages” in the central bank-driven digital currency.

"In this day and age, bulk payments happening between countries, large transactions between institutions, large transactions between central banks themselves of each country are all better enabled with a digital currency. Therefore we think the RBI would be looking to see how best they can come out with it," the finance minister said.

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The Finance Bill of 2022 had also proposed that the Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) “should also be regarded as bank notes”. The central bank has been working on a CBDC for the last two years. RBI Deputy Governor T Rabi Sankar has also mentioned that the next step for the central bank was to conduct pilot projects and proofs of concept.

Sitharaman’s address at the India Global Forum was attended by top executives and founders of India’s 30 unicorn (companies valued over a billion dollars) startups.

The attendees included chief executive (CEO) of Dream11 Harsh Jain, CEO of CoinSwitch Kuber Ashish Singhal and cofounder of VerSe Innovation (DailyHunt) Umag Bedi, among others.

CEO of CoinSwitch Kuber Ashish Singhal did ask Sitharaman about the regulation around crypto in India.

To this Sitharaman replied, “The consultations are one, you are welcome to participate. Anybody else here who is interested in this domain is welcome to participate. After the consultation process gets duly completed, the ministry would sit in and probably mull over it, which is required because we need the executive to be sure that we are not crossing any legal requirement. Post which we will come out saying what’s our position on it. I know, you have led me to say are we regulating it or are we banning it. I am not getting into it now.”

On being asked whether she sees the future of crypto in India, Sitharaman said, “Many Indians have seen a lot of future in it and, therefore, I see a possibility of revenue in it.”

The government of India had proposed a 30% tax on the proceeds from sale of cryptocurrencies and other digital assets, during the budget session of 2022. The payments made to transfer digital assets will also attract a TDS (tax deducted at source) of 1%.

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