National Australia Bank (NAB) is set to launch a stablecoin pegged against the Australian dollar (AUD) on Ethereum and Algorand, which will launch in mid-2023.
NAB will become the second “Big 4” Australian bank to launch an AUD-pegged stablecoin according to reports by the Australian Financial Review (AFR). The launch follows rival Australia and New Zealand Bank (ANZ) minting its own stablecoin last year – A$DC. NAB’s coin, dubbed AUDN, will launch on the Ethereum and Algorand blockchains. Per the report by AFR, AUDN is aimed at streamlining cross-border remittances and carbon credit trading.
Chief innovation officer at NAB, Howard Silby, said the decision to mint the stablecoin, is based on the bank’s belief that blockchain technology is key to the evolution of finance:
We certainly believe there are elements of blockchain technology that will form part of the future of finance […] From our point of view, we see [blockchain] has the potential to deliver instantaneous, transparent, inclusive, financial outcomes.
Silby added that the launch of AUDN for real-time, cross-border remittances could become a way for customers to avoid using the slower and more costly SWIFT payment network. He further stated that one of AUDN’s biggest use cases will be for carbon-credit trading.
Australia Embraces Crypto
Since Prime Minister Anthony Albanese came into power in May 2022, the country has vowed to modernize Australia’s financial system and update its regulatory framework to adapt to cryptocurrencies and other financial advances. The country became the first to introduce token mapping to identify the characteristics of all crypto tokens and how they are managed. Australia’s central bank is currently working on a central bank digital currency (CBDC) and the pilot of the project is due to be completed by mid-2023. The country has also become a leader in crypto ATM installations, becoming the fourth-largest crypto ATM hub.
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