Masayoshi Amamiya, Bank of Japan’s Deputy Governor, stated on Saturday that it was unclear whether digital currencies could enhance the monetary policies of central banks. He elaborated that the Bank of Japan had no plans whatsoever to issue a cryptocurrency.
Mr. Amamiya said that there was “quite a hurdle” for cryptocurrencies to overcome fiat currencies, and pointed out that they are mostly used as a means for investment rather than for actual payment or settlement. However, it is clear that this trend is changing, as Ripple, a cryptocurrency in the global payments space, has announced high-profile partnerships with financial institutions such as PNC Bank, a Top 10 United States bank with over 8 million customers, and more recently with the largest private foundation in the United States, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
This is not the first time that someone associated with a central bank has weighed in on cryptocurrency, and whether it should issue a digital currency. Mario Draghi, the president of the European Central Bank, and widely considered one of the most important figures in global finance, recently downplayed the idea, stating that the “underlying technology is still fragile”.