The Treasury has revealed that plans for a government-backed Royal Mint “non-fungible token (NFT)” have been abandoned.
In April 2022, while serving as chancellor, Rishi Sunak directed the creation of a “NFT for Britain” that could be traded online. NFT’s are investments in the digital world that can be purchased and sold but do not actually exist in physical form.
Following discussions with the Royal Mint, the Treasury declared it would not proceed with the launch. However, Economic Secretary Andrew Griffiths stated that the department would continue to “examine” the plan.
NFTs have been promoted as the digital equivalent of collectables, but some doubters worry that they could be a bubble that will burst soon. Some of them have been sold for millions of dollars after being exploited as speculative investments.
The Treasury Select Committee’s head, Harriet Baldwin, responded to the news by saying, “We have not yet seen a substantial amount of proof that our constituents should be investing in these risky tokens unless they are willing to lose all of their money. “Therefore, it’s possible that’s the reason the Royal Mint and Treasury decided to take this action together.
NFTs are distinct digital data units that employ the same “blockchain” technology as cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin. The blockchain ledger is updated by thousands of computers all over the world, making it impossible to forge the records.
The digital tokens, which first appeared in 2014, can be thought of as proofs of ownership for digital or physical assets and are exchangeable for fiat money or cryptocurrencies.
The Treasury is attempting to regulate some cryptocurrencies and had intended to enter the NFT sector as part of a larger effort to establish the UK as a centre for digital payment businesses.
UK Prime Minister Mr. Sunak stated in April 2022, “By effectively regulating, we can give them the security they need to consider and invest long-term.” “We want to see the cryptocurrency firms of the future—and the jobs they produce, here in the UK.”
Among the best-known NFTs are those in the “Bored Ape Yacht Club” series, which provide ownership of a special illustration of a cartoon ape to the bearer. With the bankruptcy of cryptocurrency exchange FTX last year, NFT prices fell precipitously.