The Central Bank of Jordan (CBJ) has revealed that it is researching the issuance of a digital currency. The central bank digital currency (CBDC) would be linked to the Jordanian dinar and have legal standing.
Adel Al Sharkas, the governor of CBJ, has reportedly stated that his institution is researching the option of creating a legal digital currency. He also predicted that cryptocurrency trading might eventually be permitted in Jordan once the appropriate legislation is in place. He said:
“With regards to the plans to issue a Jordanian digital currency, a study is underway to develop a legal digital currency linked to Jordanian dinar. It is possible in the future to allow cryptocurrency trading, after enacting [the] legislation and regulations.”
Per the report, Sharkas' comments were made during a meeting dedicated to discussing digital currencies. The comments followed Jordan's Lower House Economic and Investment Committee chairman Khair Abu Salik's warnings about the dangers of cryptocurrency trading.
At the meeting, officials are reported to have discussed the form of regulation that would be required to protect investors from such dangers. They also talked about launching a licensed cryptocurrency trading platform.
The CBJ governor reportedly argued that Jordan banned cryptocurrency trading to protect investors from fraudulent crypto investment schemes. He mentioned that China and four other Arab countries have imposed similar bans.
Jordan has now joined the select club of countries that have either begun or are exploring CBDC development. According to data from the Atlantic Council, as of June 2019, 91 nations are currently working on their sovereign digital currency, with just 14 having reached the pilot phase. Per the data, nine nations have already implemented a CBDC.
Related: Iran to reportedly pilot central bank digital currency soon
Switzerland and France have completed several digital currency cross-border tests. China is currently at the forefront of the CBDC development, but many European and Asian nations are accelerating their development plans to keep up with its progress.