Abu Dhabi: In a joint statement, the Central Bank of the UAE (CBUAE) and the Saudi Central Bank (SAMA) have announced the results of the “Aber” Project. The final report of the project results is available on CBUAE and SAMA’s official websites.
It should be noted that in light of ongoing experiments and research, the two central banks have launched "Aber" Project as an innovative initiative which is considered one of the first of its kind internationally at the level of central banks. This initiative aims to provide proof of concept for, study, understand, and evaluate the feasibility of issuing a digital currency for central banks (Wholesale CBDC) with a view of developing cross-border payment systems and reducing transfer times and costs between banks, in addition to experiment the direct use and actual application of technologies such as distributed ledgers. The Wholesale CBDC was fully covered and issued by CBUAE and SAMA and was only used by them and the banks participating in the initiative, as a settlement unit for domestic as well as cross-border commercial bank transactions between the UAE and Saudi Arabia.
Over the course of one year, usage solutions were designed, implemented, and managed. The solutions, results, and main lessons learned were all documented in the Project "Aber" Report. With the project outputs, the report aims to significantly enrich knowledge content in this field, in addition to laying the foundations for future work to be explored in the coming years. The final results of the pilot project were consistent with the results of similar pilots conducted by a number of central banks. These results showed that the distributed ledger technology would enable central banks to develop payment systems at both local and cross-border levels. It is hoped that the project will work as a foundation for more studies and applications conducted by central banks and relevant international organisations, focusing particularly on the various potential effects on monetary policies and the stability of the financial sector, as well as the impact of various technical possibilities on organisational structures and the sector in general.
Finally, CBUAE and SAMA would like to express their satisfaction with the achieved results, the visions shared, and the valuable lessons learned, which were all documented in the Project "Aber" Report. The results are believed to be beneficial to the central bank community and the financial system in general. Specifically, the project results are expected to contribute to developing clear perceptions of the potential of this technology and its applications on the financial sector.
© Press Release 2020