In order to encourage wider adoption, the first 100,000 Jamaican individuals who use the country’s new central bank digital currency (CBDC), known as Jam-Dex, would receive a free $16 payment.
On Thursday, Jamaican Prime Minister Andrew Holness revealed the news in a Facebook post. Some Facebook users congratulated Holness for “embracing a digital future,” while others expressed reservations about the Jamaican government’s objectives, accusing Holness of attempting to “bribe” individuals into the federal banking system.
According to the Jamaica Observer, around 17% of the Jamaican population does not have access to banking services. It is believed that, among other things, this new payment incentive will encourage poor and middle-income persons to participate in the national banking system.
The announcement comes as the Bank of Jamaica (BoJ) completed an eight-month trial program for Jam-Dex on December 31 of last year, and a national rollout is scheduled as soon as next month.
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