22. September 2023

• The Reserve Bank of India has launched a digital rupee pilot program with 50,000 users and 5,000 merchants.
• Deputy Governor Rabi Sankar stated that the government wants to proceed with CBDC testing in the smoothest way possible and is not in a hurry to make something happen quickly.
• The ICICI Bank’s digital rupee application suggests that the pilot is full at the time of writing.

India Launches Digital Rupee Pilot Program

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) recently launched its central bank digital currency (CBDC) pilot program which has already amassed 50,000 users and 5,000 merchants since last year. Deputy Governor Rabi Sankar emphasized that the government plans to proceed with CBDC testing in the smoothest way possible and is in “no hurry” to make something happen quickly.

Number of Users Onboarded

At a policy press conference announcing the first public milestones of India’s digital currency, Rabi Sankar stated that there are targets for users and merchants but they plan to go slowly. As per data from an official digital rupee application by ICICI Bank, India’s CBDC program is currently full at this time.

Progress Towards Development

Since its launch, RBI’s digital rupee pilot project has recorded 770,000 transactions across eight banks. This shows progress towards developing a viable form of payment through CBDCs as well as encouraging more people to use this form of currency moving forward.

Future Plans for CBDCs in India

In order for this project to be successful long-term, it will require further development and investment from both private businesses and government entities alike. Furthermore, it could take years before such technology becomes mainstream within India or any other country for that matter – given its complexity and various regulatory hurdles still needing addressing.


It remains uncertain what impact these developments will have on how people pay for goods or services within India or beyond its borders – although it does show promise for providing alternative forms of payment which may prove beneficial in certain cases over traditional methods such as cash or credit cards/debit cards etc.. With more countries joining the race towards their own CBDC projects it will be interesting to see where things go from here regarding this topic over time.