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Visa is developing an interoperability concept for payments in central bank digital currencies

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Payment giant Visa has taken a step towards fulfilling its vision of central bank digital currencies (CBDC). Company developed a concept that shows how different CBDCs can be interoperable with each other when making payments.

A bridge between blockchains

The concept, called the “Universal Payments Channel” (UPC), outlines how different blockchain networks can be interconnected to enable CBDC transfer. It shows how Visa can help in the future to replace different CBDCs built on different blockchains.

“It’s a much longer-term concept of thinking about the future of how Visa could potentially help become a bridge between one digital currency on one blockchain and another digital currency on another blockchain.”

– said in an interview with The Block the head of Visa’s cryptocurrency department Cuy Sheffield.

According to Visa, digital currencies, including CBDC and stablecoins, will play a vital role in people’s financial lives in the future. And for digital currencies to be successful, according to Visa, they must have a great consumer experience and be widely accepted by traders.

“This means being able to make and receive payments regardless of currency, channel or formal factor. And that’s what the Visa UPC concept is all about. “

UPC is a conceptual protocol that facilitates digital currency payments between different parties.

“UPC facilitates payments through an entity called a UPC (or server – we use these terms interchangeably), which acts as a gateway to receive payment requests from registered sending parties and routes them to registered recipients.”

– appears in her whitepaper.

Visa’s first smart contract

As part of the development of the UPC concept, Visa also deployed its first-ever exemplary smart contract on the ETH Ropsten test network. The smart contract shows a payment channel that accepts both ETH  and stablecoin USDC.

“UPC’s dedicated payment channels would be set up outside the blockchain and would use smart contracts to communicate back with various blockchain networks, ensuring secure and reliable transaction throughput and increasing overall speed.”

– stated Visa.

The company expands its knowledge and experience, learns solidity and writes smart contracts on Ethereum, said Sheffield. Will explore other blockchains in the future, he said. Ultimately, Visa’s goal is for UPC to serve as a “blockchain network” for the movement of digital currencies.


Definitely a bridge between blockchains will be needed to make payments easier, faster and more permeable. 

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All content in this article is for informational purposes only and in no way serves as investment advice. Investing in cryptocurrencies, commodities and stocks is very risky and can lead to capital losses.

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