We are sure by now you have been hearing the buzz about the application LYNK from the NCB financial group and the Development Bank of Jamaica’s recent announcement of the CBDC(Central Banking Digital Currency) JamDex.
Jamaica’s Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) is called JAM-DEX (Jamaica Digital Exchange). This new currency is the digitized form of the Jamaican dollar and is managed and distributed by the Bank of Jamaica (BOJ).
The digital dollar will have the same value as the Jamaican dollar so we will be able to have local transactions.
Digital currency allows for cash to be stored in a mobile wallet. Wi-Fi connection is not needed to conduct transactions, just a smartphone and the app created by individual financial groups, such as LYNK.
The tagline will be “No cash, no problem!”
Here are some benefits of the digital currency being launched.
- Financial inclusion – around 17% of Jamaicans do not have bank accounts, which limits the safety and convenience of transactions. A digital wallet will provide an easier-to-access means of efficient and secured payments from one’s phone, for persons who would otherwise have to walk around with large sums of cash.
- Affordable – transactions can be done without fees.
- Safe and convenient – the digital wallet is password protected, in addition to personal device protection.
- Incentive – the first 100,000 Jamaicans to open digital wallets after April 1, will receive a $2,500 deposit from the Government, as announced by the Minister of Finance.
How are you able to access it?
BOJ has partnered with deposit-taking institutions such as banks, building societies and remittance companies to allow persons to open their digital wallets.
Once a wallet is opened, individuals can add money.
You may top up by:
-Providing cash to an approved institution, either in-branch or at smart ATMs, which will be added to your wallet
-Transferring funds from your bank account to your wallet
-Transferring from another wallet
How can you spend from your wallet?
To make payments, you are required to scan the QR code or enter the wallet ID of the person with whom you wish to do business and enter the amount you want to send. Transactions are currently done from phone to phone, but there are plans to make it possible through merchant apps and point-of-sale machines.
Digital wallets are supported by a rigid infrastructure that prevents counterfeiting, hacking and information leakage. In 2021, 2.9 million transactions, valued at over J$21 trillion occurred, none of which was ever compromised.