By: Isha Das
The Republic of Palau's Ministry of Finance has reported satisfactory results from the first phase of its ground-breaking Ripple-based stablecoin program, according to a detailed report released on Dec. 7. This three-month-long pilot project was carried out in collaboration with Ripple's Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) and Central Bank Engagements teams.
The program, which commenced in June 2023 and concluded in September 2023, allowed 168 employee volunteers from Palau's executive branch to make purchases from local retailers using the U.S. dollar-pegged national stablecoin dubbed Palau Stablecoin (PSC). The issued PSC for the program was fully collateralized by $20,000 worth of USD held in an FDIC-insured U.S. bank.
The survey performed by the Ministry of Finance showed high levels of satisfaction with the pilot program amongst volunteers and retailers, with over 30% rating their experience as 'good' and over 35% as 'excellent'. Even though some participants faced issues with wallet use, payment processing or with QR code usage and manual address input, more than half found setting up and using the wallet for payment to be easy or very easy.
The success of the first phase has paved the way for future expansion of the program, with the Ministry of Finance planning to introduce the PSC nationally as a convenient and cost-effective payment method, while also focusing on creating a larger ecosystem around the stablecoin and establishing a suitable legal framework.
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