An ecosystem of digital assets complements itself perfectly and almost naturally with a Stablecoin as a means of payment, this allows transactions between digital assets to be carried out on the basis of a token-for-token exchange, also called atomic exchange, achieving a settlement snapshot. To this end, commercial banks, international corporations, and FinTechs have recently issued an increasing number of fiat-backed cryptocurrencies, also called stablecoins.
However, the application of these stable currencies entails some risks such as counterparty, problems related to customer protection and the insecurity of payment systems, without going into assessing how they affect financial stability. Perhaps one way to deal with these risks would be the issuance of legal tender currencies through central banks, the so-called digital currencies or CBDC, in this way a central bank would offer money from the central bank itself to the participants of the exchanges. In a logical first step, they would only be issued to large commercial banks. The expansion of receipt of these digital currencies to other companies or even to retail clients is an interesting scenario, but we are entering into monetary policies that must be studied in more depth.
The IMF wants us to understand that this digital currency proposal mitigates certain risks to which, according to them, stablecoins expose us and also guarantees transparency in transactions, enhances new supervisory capabilities, reduces frictions and costs in cross-border payments. All through an alternative and unique channel for central bank liquidity. In a recent BIS survey of 63 central banks, 70% are currently or will soon be working with CBDC. According to the report, half of the banks surveyed have already taken action by testing the potential of this new technology.
For example, the Monetary Authority of Singapore is studying the use of DLT for clearing and settlement of payments and securities using a tokenized Singapore dollar.
Private institutions are moving forward thanks to stable Fiat-backed currencies, such as JP Morgan which in early 2019 announced the “JP Morgan Coin“, a digital currency representing the value of a US dollar, which is deposited as collateral in designated accounts for this purpose.
Facebook launched the white paper of its own Stablecoin, its own money called Pound, a digital currency backed by a basket of low-volatility assets, including bank deposits and government securities in currencies of stable and reputable central banks. Therefore companies such as PayPal, Mastercard or Stripe joined forces in an attempt to establish a global financial infrastructure, where Meta would manage both the development of the cryptocurrency and the implementation of the cryptocurrency.
There is a huge social demand for new types of currency, and this shows the need for innovation in this very monopolistic and centrally controlled area. This is clearly a direct threat to central banking and the entire financial system as we know it today. To better understand the magnitude of the tsunami that is coming to the financial system, let me explain it in a way that I am sure you will understand the first time:
- The peseta had 40 million users, and the money was in the bank.
- The euro has 350 million users, and the money was still in the bank.
- Libra, the stable currency (euro, dollar, yen…) of facebook, has a potential of 1,600 million users (4 times the users of europe) and the money is no longer in the bank or traditional circuit, but it is now in mobiles, RRSS or cold devices isolated from the network.
Therefore, and in short, it is not a wake-up call, but the last warning to
get on board and not lose credit capacity and market share. Institutions, instead of spending time, money and resources to issue their own digital currency, should explore the field of use, which providers they will work with, how to prepare to quickly incorporate all the regulations and above all, with which talents they will lead this evolution.
The challenge faced by countries, regulators and securities commissions is to obtain answers to questions such as:
– What rules will be established around DLTs, smart contracts, etc.?
– What happens to a token if the collateral is stolen or destroyed?
– How is the ownership and sharing of a non-bank digital asset realized and organized?
– How will the interoperability of different blockchains be ensured?
– How will concerns about security issues be addressed?
– How will an operational error be handled in the context of immutability, i.e. knowing that a transaction made on a blockchain cannot be reversed?
9. NEW PARTICIPANTS IN THE MARKET
In the new space around crypto-assets, traditional players and new players such as Big Tech or FinTech compete for market share. While some have what the others do not yet have (e.g. money, customers, established brand, technology), they know that they need collaboration and competition in order not to disintegrate in an ecosystem, which few know how it will behave, but they are clear that alone they will fare worse.
Blockchain develops the virtue of collaboration, and when talking about blockchain, consortia should be studied and established, since conducting a use case or the development of a blockchain together with partners who are direct competitors, but who are like-minded, is beneficial for all, since Blockchain is global, and separately institutions would face global competition.
In the financial industry there are known consortia for trade finance, shared procedures, certification and rating management, as well as anti-fraud. Blockchain should therefore be included in these consortia as an additional member, but under rules that must be adopted and accepted by all.
10. LEADING IN THE NEW DIGITAL AGE
New capabilities and new approaches are not necessary, but are considered keys to make a difference in this new space. It is clear that staying in the “old world” is a very free and respectable option, since service must continue to be provided. to traditional and non-technological customers It can even be a competitive advantage (if we see it from the point of view of the market niche), as it is more neglected due to the massive migration of individual customers, companies and institutions towards the “new market and financial service”, but it is not a guarantee that it will continue to be necessary or profitable, even if competition decreases.
Players in the financial services industry must decide what role they want to play, and what approach they want to take, knowing that their future customers will be millennials and unclassified new generations, who are showing great interest in Blockchain, in cryptocurrencies and in the tokenization of assets, since they perceive that access to money is not a service that someone or something has to give them, but rather they perceive it as a means to achieve an end, which means accessing an opportunity at any time and anywhere in the world, and these means must be at your disposal without conditions.
BELOBABA has its roadmap well marked and clear. It is also clear on which side it is positioned and to whom it will provide services and access. Doubting is no longer an option, nor is turning the rudder to change course. We are sailing towards an uncertain but bright future, with a strong cognitive nuance, and taking advantage of it is a right we are willing to use. If you are aligned with us, you are welcome to enjoy the journey together, and if on the other hand you are not motivated, nor do you see the change, good luck on your own.