Digital currencies are the future in Asia – MENAFN.COM

SectorFinancial Markets
CountryMiddle east

When digital currencies and cryptocurrencies sprang to life, bitcoin was viewed as a direct challenge to central banks' control of currency. After an early reluctance and hostility toward cryptocurrencies, central banks are starting to recognise and embrace blockchain the highly innovative technological backbone behind bitcoin. Blockchain covers a range of programmable technologies with adjustable parameters and algorithms, offering different ways to track and trace assets. The technology enables an unprecedented opportunity for managing the issuance of currencies.

There is a distinction between digital currencies in the broad sense and cryptocurrencies based on blockchain technology. Most money is already digital it exists only as entries in computer databases. Central banks have different measures and controls for the amount of physical cash in circulation versus the amount of money held in bank accounts and elsewhere. As digital technologies develop and evolve, central banks in Asia are grasping the opportunities. Thailand has been one of the leaders in digital payments with a focus on immediate interbank transfers between individuals and at point of sale using QR codes, mobile and account numbers. The Bank of Thailand supported the 'PromptPay ' initiative in 2017 and encouraged Thai banks to realise large cost savings from the more...