According to Reuters, US President Joe Biden will sign an executive order this week that will oblige the Department of Justice, the Treasury and other agencies to study the possible prospects and consequences of issuing an official cryptocurrency, the Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC).
As far back as last year, the White House said it would consider introducing widespread oversight of the cryptocurrency market and issuing an executive order to combat the growing threat from ransomware and other forms of cybercrime. The order will set a 180-day deadline for departments to prepare reports on the “money of the future” and the role that cryptocurrencies will play in the new economy. A Reuters source told Reuters: “In 180 days, we will see significant policy changes. This will be a likely step towards the creation of a central bank digital currency . ”
Biden’s order, which is expected to be released today, will answer questions about Russia’s possible use of cryptocurrencies to circumvent sanctions, the e-yuan being actively promoted by Beijing, and other government cryptocurrencies. As part of the new initiative, the US Department of Justice will answer the question of whether a new law will be required to issue a CBDC, and the Treasury, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), the Federal Trade Commission, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and other agencies will study the potential impact of a new form of money on the consumer. Issues such as the impact of cryptocurrencies on competition, the creation of a market and technical infrastructure for the issuance of CBDC, as well as the impact of bitcoin mining on the environment will be identified.
According to a study from the University of Chicago, last year the total value of cryptocurrencies exceeded $3 trillion, and 14% of Americans invested in digital assets. This, of course, caught the attention of US financial regulators, with the head of the SEC, Gary Gensler, calling the cryptocurrency industry the “ Wild West ” in the world of finance. He also told lawmakers that he wants to oblige crypto exchanges to register with his department, as traditional trading platforms do. The chairman of the US Commodity Futures Trading Commission, Rostin Behnam, told Congress that he wants to make his agency the main regulator of digital assets.