The House of Lords will discuss the possibility of having a central bank digital currency called “Britcoin” tomorrow.
Its Economic Affairs Committee will take evidence from the Deputy Governor of the Bank of England on blockchain technology, the distributed ledger that allows Bitcoin to function as an online currency.
In the session with Dr Ben Broadbent the Committee will explore the prospect of a central bank digital currency and the effect it could have on commercial banks, predictions that blockchain technology could produce annual savings of $16 billion in administration costs for financial services firms and what risks the technology may pose to financial security.
In the second session questions will cover the industries most likely to be impacted by blockchain technology, its possible applications for Government services (such as tax collection and benefits payments) and concerns about security of the technology.
In the session with Blythe Masters and Simon Taylor areas covered will include the risks associated with transitioning from the current settlement system to a blockchain based system and further applications of the technology in financial services.
The session comes as the Bank of England explores the possibility of central banks using digital currencies.