The IMF Releases a Report on Jordan Preparations for a Central Bank

After the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has finished its technical assessment on the country’s markets, the Central Bank of Jordan is one step closer to taking the next step that is necessary to launch a retail central bank digital currency. This action was necessitated as a consequence of the International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) conclusion of the research that they commissioned (rCBDC). In order to give assistance in the development of a CBDC feasibility study the previous year, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) sent a mission to the bank that lasted for a combined total of three months and lasted for the whole of the preceding calendar year. During the course of the preceding calendar year, this mission was carried out. On February 23rd, the research was made available to the public by the International Monetary Fund.

An investigation on the current condition of the retail payment sector in the country was carried out by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) during the months of July and September 2022. After looking at their data, they came to the conclusion that the market was “extremely linked.” According to the findings of the study, the nation has a high smartphone penetration, and there are two non-bank payment service providers (PSPs) that provide goods that are “generally accessible and appropriate.” Additionally, the country has a large number of people who own smartphones. In addition to this, a sizable portion of the population of the nation has a computer and access to the internet.

Despite this, a rCBDC would expand people’s access to financial services by making them available to them even if they do not have telephones. This would make it possible for more people to benefit from these services. Because of this, it will be feasible for a greater number of individuals to make use of these services. There are a few other ways, besides those already mentioned, in which a rCBDC may be of aid to the domestic payment system. These include decreasing the costs associated with transferring money internationally and making the infrastructure of a rCBDC accessible to payment service providers (PSPs).


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Solana Spaces to Close Down Stores

Solana Spaces has decided to close its two Solana (SOL)-themed, community-oriented retail shops in New York City and Miami at the end of this month. These stores are situated in both cities respectively. This decision was taken as a result of the fact that the physical shops did not bring in as many new users as was first anticipated when they were first opened.

Solana Spaces announced the news through a tweet on February 21, which also contained a message from the shop’s founder, Vibhu Norby, explaining the many factors that contributed to the decision to close the stores.

Norby, who founded Solana Spaces in the early part of 2022, explained that the company had reached a “inflection point” with the stores, which prompted them to shift their investment focus to “DRiP,” the firm’s brand-new nonfungible token artwork airdrop platform. This move was prompted by the fact that the company had reached a “inflection point.” Norby also said that he was the one responsible for establishing Solana Spaces in the first place.

“While our stores onboard between 500 and 1,000 people per week, DRiP onboards that same number EVERY DAY,” Norby noted, explaining why the firm opted to shift its investment priority. “While our shops onboard between 500 and 1,000 people per week, DRiP onboards that same number EVERY DAY.” “While our shops bring on between 500 and 1,000 customers every week, DRiP brings on that same number every single day,”

Norby stated that the decision to close the stores, which are located in the Wynwood neighborhood of Miami and the Hudson Yards neighborhood of Manhattan, was made “a few weeks ago,” and that they would “sunset” at the end of the month of February. Both of these neighborhoods are in the city of New York.

Because the two stores in New York and Miami did not open their doors to the general public until the end of July and August, respectively, the ambitious endeavor was only operating for a relatively little period of time.


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Cryptocurrency exchange Huobi Global is seeking a license in Hong Kong

The cryptocurrency exchange known as Huobi Global is now in the process of applying for a license in Hong Kong, which comes at a time when the Chinese special administrative region is mulling over potential licensing and regulatory changes that would enable it to work with retail clients.

The new regulatory framework, which stipulates that cryptocurrency exchanges must register with the Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) of Hong Kong, would make it possible for the exchange to extend its service offerings to include the city. According to a thread that was started on Twitter by Justin Sun, Huobi intends to launch a new exchange in Hong Kong that will be called Huobi Hong Kong and would cater mostly to high-net-worth people and institutions.

The Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) only just made the new Hong Kong licensing proposals available for public comment, and the new regulations are scheduled to take effect in June. As soon as suppliers of financial services heard about the impending adjustments, they began making preparations to participate in the upgraded system in December.

During an interview with Nikkei Asia, Sun said that Huobi may raise the number of employees working out of its Hong Kong office from 50 to 200 this year. He said that the move was prompted by Hong Kong’s favorable position on cryptocurrency as well as the prospect of retail sales.

In January, Huobi said that as part of the firm’s reorganization after Sun’s acquisition of the company in October, they would be laying off twenty percent of its workforce. The cryptocurrency exchange said in February that it would “strategic and product modifications” be the reason why its Huobi Cloud Wallet will be discontinued in May.

According to Nikkei Asia, Huobi is reportedly looking into the possibility of relocating its headquarters from Singapore to Hong Kong.

Huobi is also working to extend its service offerings in a number of other locations. It was revealed in January that the company is going to create a crypto-to-fiat debit card supported by Visa. Customers of Huobi who live in the European Economic Area will be able to use this card everywhere Visa is accepted. It is anticipated that you will be able to purchase that card around the second quarter of this year.


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NFT battles: Nike takes seller of unlicensed NFT sneakers to the court

Popular sneaker maker Nike has started the “licensed NFT” wars by taking an online reseller called StockX to court for trademark infringement or sale of unlicensed nonfungible token (NFT) sneakers.

According to a Reuters report, Nike has filed a lawsuit against the reseller in the New York Federal court demanding an undisclosed amount in damages and a halt of sales on such virtual collectibles. StockX reportedly started selling Nike sneaker NFTs in January and promised buyers they can redeem the real-world version of the sneakers in the near future.

Nike in its 50-page complaint claimed StockX has sold nearly 500 NFT sneakers with the Nike branding which has dented their reputation and legitimacy. The shoemaker brand also alleged the NFT sneakers were being sold at inflated prices with very “murky terms of purchase and ownership.” 

StockX is a popular online reseller estimated to be worth $3.8 billion and the NFT sneakers because of which it is facing the lawsuit is still online. The collection is called ‘The Vault’ comprising of 9 premium Nike sneakers and deals with NFTs tied to their real-world asset.

Related: From art to gaming: The biggest NFT trends of 2021

Nike claimed NFTs are a way for brands to interact with their customers, but some of the players in the market are trying to “usurp the goodwill of some of the most famous trademarks in the world and use those trademarks without authorization to market their virtual products and generate ill-gotten profits.” The shoe-maker is set to launch its own NFTs collection later this month in association with recently acquired art studio RTFKT.

NFTs popularity has made it a primary PR and marketing tool for brands and celebrities. However, as with any popular use case in the decentralized world, NFTs have reached a point of exploitation. Apart from Nike, there have been several other lawsuits around NFTs involving big brands and celebrities. Pulp Fiction’s film production company Miramax sued the director of the film Quentin Tarantino for selling NFTs of the movie, calling it copyright infringement.