E-rupee transactions slip to 1 lakh per day from 10 lakh in December 2023

Use of digital currency in the country, the e-rupee, has slumped to just a tenth of the peak hit in December 2023, four sources have said, reflecting the struggles several countries have experienced in trying to generate public support for digital currencies.
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) had started a pilot for the e-rupee, devised as a digital alternative to physical cash, in December 2022, and successfully reached a target of 10 lakh retail transactions per day by December 2023.
The achievement had come only after banks were asked to push up transactions by offering incentives to retail users and disbursing a portion of bank employees’ salaries using the e-rupee.
But now that the push has diminished, daily transaction numbers have fallen to about 1,00,000, the sources have said.
This shows that there is little organic demand to use the e-rupee, the sources have reiterated.
The transactions that are continuing are in part due to banks disbursing benefits to their employees via the e-rupee.
This has helped push up transactions to about 2,50,000 to 3,00,000 per day towards the end of each month.
The RBI is not planning to rapidly expand the pilot, and the current focus is on testing the technology and developing use cases for the digital currency.
Globally, among 86 central banks surveyed by the Bank of International Settlements, a third are running a pilot for a central bank digital currency.

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