Eurasian Bank has launched a digital and physical debit card that enables holders to complete in-store and online transactions using Kazakhstan’s central bank digital currency (CBDC).
The Digital Tenge CBDC Card is the first payments card linked to a CBDC to be rolled out in the Eurasian region. Its launch “gave a start to the development of the digital tenge ecosystem and in the near future Kazakhstanis will be able to use the first products based on it”, the National Payment Corporation of Kazakhstan says.
The card has been launched with support from Mastercard and can be used to make purchases “anywhere Mastercard is accepted in Kazakhstan and around the world”.
“The Digital Tenge CBDC Card offers a number of important advantages for both cardholders and merchants. For example, the cardholder gets a choice: The card complements the CBDC wallet, providing another payment method and maximum flexibility,” Mastercard explains.
“Cardholders can safely spend Digital Tenge in person at retail outlets, online stores and on various websites. The card can be stored in the consumer’s phone, watch or physical wallet.
“For merchants, the advantages of the card include [an] even greater choice of payment methods to be accepted with no infrastructure upgrades required, such as no need to install additional equipment or update software.
“An important factor is security — cardholders are provided with Mastercard’s leading technology and benefits that protect cardholders and merchants from fraud and guarantee the security and benefits of the international payment system.”
The National Bank of the Republic of Kazakhstan published a public consultation document laying out its plans to develop and pilot the digital tenge in May 2021.