• Certain customers will be given the opportunity to conduct test transactions.
  • The bank also showcased a functionality for purchasing digital financial assets.

Among Russian banks, VTB Bank is the first to design a prototype that would let customers utilize the digital equivalent of the country’s fiat currency to fund accounts and make transactions using the bank’s mobile app.

The bank’s press service indicated that in 2023, certain customers will be given the opportunity. To conduct test transactions using the digital ruble. Vadim Kulik, Deputy Chairman of VTB’s Executive Board was optimistic about the recent development.

Vadim stated:

“At this stage, we are testing the opening of wallets for legal entities, we have already managed to register a legal entity, set up a wallet for it and generate a static QR code to pay for purchase.”

Deploying Digital Ruble

The bank also showcased a functionality for purchasing digital financial assets, or coins and tokens. With an issuer under current Russian legislation, using digital rubles during Finopolis-2022, a symposium for new financial technology. Next year, it will also be made accessible to the public.

By 2024, the bank plans to provide an exchange feature. That will enable the conversion of digital rubles to standard electronic money.

In October 2020, Bank of Russia unveiled the idea for its central bank digital currency (CBDC), and in December 2021, the prototype platform was completed. Furthermore, this year’s trial program officially kicked off in January.

Moreover, the central bank said in May that it will begin using digital rubles in actual transactions with clients beginning in April 2023. The regulatory agency said in June that it will speed up the project’s timeline in response to sanctions imposed in response to Russia’s armed invasion of Ukraine. The complete rollout is scheduled for 2024.

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