KUALA LUMPUR: Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) has no immediate plan to issue central bank digital currency (CBDC), said Deputy Finance Minister II Yamani Hafez Musa.

He said that in Malaysia, the national payment systems, including the Real-Time Retail Payment (RPP) platform, continued to operate in a secure and efficient manner to meet economic needs and at the same time enable real-time digital payments.

“The Malaysian financial system continues to support the functioning of the economy while meeting the needs of individuals and businesses.

“However, BNM will continue to actively assess the potential of the CBDC to achieve public policy goals,” he said in a question-and-answer session at Dewan Rakyat today.

Yamani Hafez was responding to a question from Lukanisman Awang Sauni (GPS-Sibuti) who wanted to know the government’s strategy to ensure that Malaysians, especially young people, are not left behind in understanding blockchain technology, its position on the use of cryptocurrencies in daily transactions. , and initiatives to process its own crypto-currencies (stablecoins).

The deputy minister said that the rapidly changing landscape of payments and cryptocurrencies has prompted central banks to assess whether or not to issue CBDCs.

“The CBDC is a digital payment instrument issued by a central bank and it is explored and studied by various central banks around the world,” he said.

Yamani Hafez said that among government initiatives to ensure Malaysians, especially young people, are not left behind in understanding blockchain technology, was the organization of the annual FinTech SCxSC conference by the Securities Commission Malaysia. (SC) for eight years since 2014.

“This year, the SCxSC conference was held from October 26 to 28, 2021. Of the attendees, 60% were from the 35 and under age group.

“In the financial industry, the first application of blockchain technology is in cryptocurrencies or digital currencies such as Bitcoin,” he said.

Regarding the government’s position on the use of cryptocurrencies in day-to-day transactions, he said digital assets could be issued by companies for fundraising purposes, but were also subject to conditions set by the SC as provided by the capital markets. and Services (Prescription of Securities) Order 2019.

Regarding the use of cryptocurrencies for payment purposes, he stated that cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin and Ethereum are not recognized as legal tender currencies in Malaysia and are not an instrument of payment regulated by BNM.

“Cryptocurrencies are not suitable for use as a payment instrument because currencies do not have the universal characteristics of money,” he said.

In general, he said that cryptocurrencies are not a good store of value and medium of exchange due to the risks that cryptocurrencies will be vulnerable to volatile price movements and exposure to cyberthreats and lack of scalability. -Bernama