BOJ Building Awareness on Cryptocurrency

Story Highlights

  • Deputy Governor of the Bank of Jamaica (BOJ), Livingstone Morrison, says the central bank must create opportunities for the exploitation of certain technologies, including cryptocurrency.
  • Cryptocurrency is a medium of exchange like normal currencies, such as the United States dollar, but is designed for the purpose of exchanging digital information through a process made possible by certain principles of cryptography. In its simplest form, cryptocurrency is digital currency.

Deputy Governor of the Bank of Jamaica (BOJ), Livingstone Morrison, says the central bank must create opportunities for the exploitation of certain technologies, including cryptocurrency.

Informing that this is an area the Bank is exploring, Mr. Morrison pointed out that such technologies should not pose undue risk to the local financial system.

Presently, Mr. Morrison informed that the Bank has established an internal group of persons who are working to build awareness of these kinds of technological happenings across the world.

“They (the group) are also guiding regional efforts. In this particular development (use of cryptocurrencies), whatever we do in Jamaica will have a ripple effect across the region, certainly if the benefits are to be fully accessed,” he said.

Mr. Morrison was responding to a question posed by Manager of Research and Stockbroking at VM Wealth, Nicole Adamson, on the use of cryptocurrencies, at the BOJ’s quarterly media briefing held at its headquarters in downtown Kingston on August 16.

The Deputy Governor noted that the benefits available to Jamaica “lie in embracing the wider use of opportunities that the current technology provides”.

Cryptocurrency is a medium of exchange like normal currencies, such as the United States dollar, but is designed for the purpose of exchanging digital information through a process made possible by certain principles of cryptography. In its simplest form, cryptocurrency is digital currency.

An example of a digital currency is bitcoin. It can be traded for goods and services with vendors who accept bitcoins as payment.

Locally, a bitcoin exchange called Caricoin is exploring opportunities for establishment in Jamaica.

The company, which originates in the United Kingdom, requires approval from the BOJ to operate and has been in discussion with the central bank.

Any approval from the Bank is likely to take shape in the form of mobile money.

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