UK Advertises for Head of Central Bank Digital Currency

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  • The British government has advertised for a Head of Central Bank Digital Currency
  • The role will see the occupant join a “growing CBDC taskforce”
  • Work on a UK CBDC has been kept largely quiet to date

The British government has advertised for a job that will fill the souls of many in the crypto space with dread – head of its Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC). Discussions over a potential digital pound have been slow to get off the ground, but it seems that they have recently gathered pace, with the advert discussing the presence of a “growing CBDC taskforce”. Warnings have been issued over the surveillance powers of CBDCs, which it is thought will give governments far more control over citizens’ money than ever before.

Timeline Already Set Out by Ministers

The advert for the role on LinkedIn says that the individual chosen will be “responsible for leadership of HM Treasury’s work on a potential digital pound”, adding that the move to digital money from physical offers “exciting opportunities for UK businesses and consumers” which has “motivated countries around the world to explore digital versions of central bank money.”

It adds that a digital pound would be “a new form of digital money for use by households and businesses issued directly by the Bank of England”, and notes the creation of a “CBDC Taskforce” which will “explore the case for a digital pound.”

Interestingly, it adds that the “timeline for the work has been set out by Ministers and the Bank of England”, suggesting that the UK government has a very clear idea of when it wants its digital pound rolled out.

CBDCs Will Not be Welcomed

The Bank of England published a paper in March 2020 in which it outlined the pros and cons of a digital pound, in which it noted that while it would ease transactional friction in some areas it could also “raise significant challenges for maintaining monetary and financial stability.”

Criticism for CBDCs has been swift and noted, with Arthur Hayes calling them “pure evil” and Edward Snowden warning that they will “ransom our future”.