Global payment giant Mastercard has announced that it has formed a Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) program with its first partners, including popular altcoin issuer Ripple and Blockchain development company Consensys.
In a statement released by Mastercard, the company announced that it has brought together a group of Blockchain and payment service providers to develop a CBDC program. Raj Dhamodharan, Mastercard’s President of Digital Assets and Blockchain, stated that the new CBDC program is designed to “encourage collaboration with key players in the field.”
Dhamodharan said, “We believe that collaboration among payment options and different ways of making payments is a fundamental component of a growing economy.” Ripple, Consensys, Fireblocks, and tokenized asset service provider Fluency are among the program’s initial partners, according to the announcement from the payment giant.
In a podcast interview published earlier this month, Dhamodharan stated, “If a government wants to create a CBDC and make it usable by businesses and consumers, it needs to have flexibility from day one in terms of production, consumer protection, and privacy.”
While Mastercard did not provide details about its plans for the new CBDC program, it emphasized that CBDCs should not be adopted in a vacuum and that the CBDC Partnership Program will help central banks understand how to develop a CBDC that brings something new and valuable to the economy.
In September 2020, Mastercard launched a testing platform for central banks to evaluate CBDC systems. In February 2021, the payment giant began issuing prepaid cards in the Bahamas, allowing users to convert the country’s CBDC, the Bahamian dollar, using these cards.