The Bank of Thailand has begun pilot testing for its central bank digital currencies (CBDC).
This project is intended to test the application possibilities of digital payment systems and improve the efficiency of payment transactions in the country.
The new digital currency will be tested in specially created mobile banking apps by August 2023, with up to 10,000 users participating. Participants will have to add money in the app to buy digital baht, which they can then use in participating stores to pay for goods and services.
The plan is to use the CBDC as a payment method for goods and services and to offer some social benefits for retail users.
Bank of Ayudhya (Krungsri), Siam Commercial Bank and Singapore-based payment service provider 2C2P have participated in the pilot project. For the CBDC technology, the bank partnered with Giesecke+Devrient (G+D).
Thailand has been working on digitizing payments for many years. In 2021, the Bank of Thailand (BoT) announced that it planned to launch a digital central bank currency for retail customers by the second quarter of 2022. On April 2, 2021, the BoT published a paper titled "The Way Forward for Retail Central Bank Digital Currency in Thailand." The paper aimed to raise awareness of CBDC and explain the key fundamentals of how it works.