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Kazakhstan's National Bank Sets Up New Division for CBDC Rollout

Kazakhstan's National Bank creates NPC to oversee digital currency initiatives, partnering with global crypto exchange, Binance, for its digital tenge project.

Mon, 18 Sep 2023, 14:33 pm UTC

Kazakhstan's premier banking institution, the National Bank of Kazakhstan (NBK), has announced the creation of a distinct unit, the National Payment Corporation (NPC), geared towards streamlining the country’s financial digital ventures, notably the digital tenge.

This move was clarified in a public statement released on September 15. Essentially, the NPC is an evolved form of the previous Kazakhstan Center for Interbank Settlements. This freshly minted organization is tasked with supervising the broad spectrum of the national payment landscape, spanning from overseeing interbank transactions to endorsing digital identification processes.

Central to NPC's mandate is the evolution and practical rollout of the digital financial infrastructure, chief among which is the realization of the digital tenge.

Chronologically tracing back to February 2023, the foundational steps for the digital tenge were initiated, eyeing a formal introduction by 2025. During these initial stages, NBK's deputy governor, Berik Sholpankupov, shed light on the bank’s aspiration. He painted a picture of a seamless blend of conventional banking and decentralized finance (DeFi) avenues. This alliance, as per his views, would be instrumental in enhancing financial access while fortifying international trading networks.

On the present front, the digital tenge's trial run is actively being tested in a secure environment, involving genuine buyers and sellers. Binance, recognized globally as a preeminent crypto exchange, is a significant collaborator in this endeavor. Their technical prowess is channeled through their BNB Chain, which provides the necessary infrastructure for the project.

Earlier in June, Binance had further solidified its commitment to Kazakhstan. They initiated a sanctioned digital asset interface in alliance with the nation's Freedom Finance Bank. This allowed individuals the flexibility to move their traditional currency into their online accounts on this joint platform.

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