Of course, China is leading the pack, having also been prompted by Libra to hasten its development of a digital yuan. The People’s Bank of China has suggested it is almost ready for launch, but denied reports of a November debut.
Dutch bank ING’s chief economist has said “fully fledged” digital currencies will developed by central banks in just two to three years.
Mark Cliffemight, speaking in an ING video published Friday, argued that the Facebook-led Libra cryptocurrency project is putting pressure on monetary authorities. With Libra slated for launch in 2020, central banks “would have” to make a move in that timeline.
“I think we’ve already got some sense of urgency amongst the policy community,” he added.
Addressing the benefits for central banks, Cliffemight explained that a digital currency would allow banks to replace physical cash and therefore “move even further into negative territory with interest rates.”
It would “open up a whole range of policy options,” the economist said, as well as providing other ways to support economic activity in a future downturn.
There are already hints that Libra is prompting central banks to more seriously consider the digital currency path.
At the same time as French economy and finance minister Bruno Le Maire said he planned to block Libra in the EU in mid September, he also revealed he’d discussed the creation of a “public digital currency” with outgoing European Central Bank president Mario Draghi and Christine Lagarde, who will take over his position later this year.
InstaDApp DeFi Site Raises $2.4 Million From Prominent Crypto Investors
India-based InstaDApp announced Tuesday that it raised $2.4 million to build out its smart wallet. The goal is to help users easily execute advanced transactions through the company’s decentralized finance (DeFi) portal.
In the early days of the internet, some of the most valuable properties were portals – websites that gathered information in one place. Now, in the early days of the decentralized web, InstaDApp wants to be a window into multiple DeFi services – one that makes it easy to move assets between them.
The round was led by Pantera Capital, with a slew of prominent investors including Naval Ravikant, Balaji Srinivasan, Coinbase Ventures, IDEO Colab, Robot Ventures and Kyber Network’s Loi Luu.
In an email to CoinDesk, InstaDApp co-founder Sowmay Jain said his company’s decentralized app (dapp) is an interface to multiple protocols.
“For InstaDApp, we focused on building up a layer that acts as the mediator between the user interface and underlying protocols,” Jain said. “This layer, consisting of our smart wallet, bridges contracts and reserve pools, [and] abstracts away lots of complexities.”
InstaDapp currently provides interfaces for Compound, Uniswap and MakerDAO. As of this writing, InstaDApp is the fourth-largest dapp in DeFi, according to DeFi Pulse, with $30.8 million worth of assets locked in its smart contracts (up from only $4.2 million in early July).
“InstaDApp is a very talented team out of India looking to make decentralized finance more accessible,” Balaji Srinivasan, formerly of Coinbase and Earn.com, wrote in a blog post shared with CoinDesk prior to publication.
“India is actually our second-biggest source traffic after America,” despite the fact that the central bank has restricted financial institutions from facilitating crypto transactions, Sowmay wrote. “The movement might be slowed down, but it cannot be stopped.”
Notably, InstaDApp’s Jain is 21 years old; fellow co-founder Samyak Jain is 19. Nevertheless, they have pivoted their lives to crypto, writing in a blog post shared with CoinDesk that they have dropped out of school to “become full-on ‘native DeFi.’”
“We realized that the traditional finance systems we were studying in school were slow to innovate, extremely restrictive, tightly controlled by financial giants and bound by geographical constraints. With DeFi, though, we realized that we can not only participate, but [are] also able to innovate globally from day one.”