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重振市场信心 哈萨克斯坦央行或将推行本国电子货币

和目前大多数苦苦挣扎的国家一样,哈萨克斯坦的经济和美元紧密相连。近来席卷全球的股市震荡和全球油价下跌,使当地货币对美元价格大范围震动。哈萨克斯坦坚戈(注:当地货币名称)在去年经历了大幅贬值。

哈萨克斯坦央行已出手干预稳定市场,但是在三轮贬值后,重建市场信心仍是一个不小的挑战。更严重的是,这场金融危机使消费者对金融机构态度趋于负面,对央行不再抱有信心。

值得关注的是,哈萨克斯坦央行的储备金也并非以坚戈持有。尽管阈值为60%,但多达80%的用户存款是以美元、欧元等外币持有,而公司和企业存款情况也大致相同。这也为坚戈的前景蒙上一层阴影。

现在,各国都在探讨推出电子货币的可能性,市场各方对虚拟货币的态度也开始转变。尽管大多数人最初只将其作为一个小众概念,但已经有越来越多的银行从业者开始提倡这种方法。这不仅能使中央银行保持对货币供给的控制力,也可以更好地控制虚拟坚戈的汇率浮动。

哈萨克斯坦央行最早可能在今年末才会正式开展这项计划。目前,俄罗斯央行宣称已经着手电子卢布的推进计划,并预期在2016年6月将其正式推向市场。作为俄罗斯的邻邦国家,哈萨克斯坦可以借机观察俄罗斯政府官员在接下来几年对待该项计划的反应。

发行国家电子货币的好处显而易见:既能推进更加快捷的消费,降低交易成本,还能保证哈萨克斯坦央行不用放弃任何的权力。事实上,他们会拥有更大的权力:他们可以监测每一笔虚拟坚戈和及其拥有者的动向。

除此之外,电子货币将会为哈萨克斯坦和阿塞拜疆等国家提供一套促进经济多元化的工具。目前,这些国家严重依赖石油和其他自然资源的出口,经济种类非常单一。虚拟货币允许银行处理该项问题,不过其对现实世界的影响仍然有待观察。

Similar to most struggling countries around the globe right now, the economy in Kazakhstan is linked to the US Dollar. However, with the recent financial woes hitting stock markets all over the world, combined with a declining oil price, the exchange value of a local currency against the US Dollar is fluctuating by quite a margin. Unfortunately for Kazakhstan, the value of their Kazakhstani Tenge has been losing a lot of ground over the past year.

An intervention by the Central Bank of Kazakhstan would help stabilize matters a bit, although it would be quite a challenge to rebuild trust in the Tenge after three iterations of devaluing the currency. Moreover, consumers are not putting their faith in the Central Bank either, as the financial trouble has been putting a lot of negative attention on the financial institution.

But there is another concern, as the Central Bank is not keeping their reserves in Tenge either. As much as 80% of deposited funds by consumers is being held in foreign currencies, including the US Dollar, Euro, and others. The same principle applies to funds deposited by companies and enterprises, although the threshold is lower at roughly 60%. This does not instill much confidence in the future of the Tenge as a currency in Kazakhstan.

Now that various countries are looking to issue their form of digital currency, a mind shift is taking place among financial players. Whereas most of them thought of this concept as a niche project, at first, more and more people in the banking sector are advocating for this approach. Not only would the central bank remain in full control of the monetary supply, but they would also be able to direct the flows of virtual Tenge in the country.

However, the Central Bank of Kazakhstan might hold off on pursuing this idea until later this year. The Central Bank of Russia is – allegedly – working on a plan to propose the concept of issuing a digital Ruble, and it is expected these ideas will be presented in June 2016. Depending on how this proposal will be received by government officials, neighboring countries might take a closer look at this solution over the coming years.

The advantages of issuing national digital currency are rather simple to explain: faster and cheaper transactions for consumers and businesses while the Central Bank of Kazakhstan would not relinquish any of its financial power. In fact, they would become more powerful as they can keep track of every single piece of virtual Tenge, and who controls it at that time.

Additionally, venturing into the world of digital currency would give countries such as Kazakhstan and Azerbaijan a tool to diversify their economy. Up until this point, these countries have been heavily relying on exporting oil and other natural resources, leaving very little room for diversification. A virtual Tenge would allow the bank to address some of these issues as well, although it remains to be seen how this would translate to the real world.


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