BIS Completes Wholesale Digital Currency Project With France and Swiss Regulatorsby Fintechnews Switzerland December 9, 2021
Banque de France (BdF), Swiss National Bank (SNB) and Bank for International Settlements’ (BIS) Innovation Hub have successfully completed Project Jura, an experiment in cross-border wholesale central bank digital currencies (wCBDCs).
The project was completed by a consortium led by Accenture and includes Credit Suisse, Natixis, R3, SIX Digital Exchange (SDX) and UBS.
Project Jura successfully explored cross-border settlement of tokenised assets in wCBDC on a distributed ledger technology (DLT) enabled platform.
The project explored settling foreign exchange (FX) transactions in euro and Swiss franc wholesale CBDCs as well as issuing, transferring and redeeming a tokenised euro-denominated French commercial paper between French and Swiss financial institutions.
Project Jura is novel in two ways as it firstly tests a new approach to promote secure, fast and efficient cross-border settlements by extending the safety of central bank money to cross-border settlements between resident and non-resident financial institutions using multiple wCBDCs.
Second, it shows a new approach that may give central banks comfort to issue wCBDC on a third-party platform with separate sub-networks and to allow regulated non-resident financial institutions access to wCBDC.
The experiment involved real-value payments and settlements under the existing legal and regulatory frameworks.
Project Jura is part of a series of CBDC experiments announced by the BdF in July 2020 and continues the wCBDC experimentation by the SNB and BIS Innovation Hub initiated with Project Helvetia.
According to a joint statement, the experiment is of exploratory nature and should not be interpreted as an indication that the BdF or the SNB plan to issue wCBDCs.
“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.
It also demonstrates how central banks and the private sector can work together across borders to foster innovation.”
said Benoît Cœuré, Head of the BIS Innovation Hub.
“As a small open economy, Switzerland requires efficient and robust cross-border payment and settlement arrangements.
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, Member of the Governing Board, Swiss National Bank.