Digital Money: The Rise of the Entrepreneurial State

Citi Public Digital Money | The Rise of the Entrepreneurial State | March 2022 3 Citi Public Digital Money | The Rise of the Entrepreneurial State | March 2022 2 Naveed Sultan Managing Director and Chairman, Institutional Clients Group, Citi +44 (20) 7500-5153 Introduction Recent technology developments, regulatory mandates, and pandemic induced change in consumer behavior towards digital are providing a significant impetus to digital money readiness. While some countries have taken advantage of these trends and marched ahead in driving readiness of their economies, others have struggled. What is common to several economies that are climbing up the readiness curve? Citi and Imperial College London’s revamped Digital Money Index provides answers to these and more. Digital money is here and now. While the benefits of digital money adoption have been well articulated and widely known for several years now, recent technology, regulatory and pandemic induced consumer behavioral changes and developments have provided the necessary impetus for a rapid acceleration of digital money readiness and adoption across the world. However, driving digital money readiness and adoption has not been easy, as has been well documented by Citi and Imperial College London over the past seven years. It requires collaboration across economic stakeholders around a common digital vision and countries require a holistic digital policy. Such a holistic digital policy, which is explained in more detail within this report, can enable countries to reap the full benefits of a digitized economy. However, it is not just about policy. As this paper later explains, it appears that across developing markets, policymakers who have followed up on their vision with targeted initiatives and direct investments to develop the building blocks of a digital economy have managed to drive digital adoption at an increased rate comparable to that of developed markets. Such countries have also outperformed their peers on economic growth. Acknowledging this critical role of governments in driving readiness and adoption, Citi and Imperial College London revamped the Digital Money Index to provide sufficient primacy to government and market support — as evidenced in one of the Index’s four core pillars. In addition to this, we have augmented the index with several new indicators that are increasingly getting tracked and made available across countries. All of this has helped us track and measure digital progress in a more robust fashion. The digital money journey gets more exciting with every day. Naveed Sultan About the authors Nagarajan Ganesan AVP, TTS Digital Analysis & Insights, Citi Nagarajan Ganesan is part of TTS Digital Analysis and Insights team-responsible for influencing the digital agenda of TTS businesses. He has over 13 years’ experience serving the financial services industry in the areas of Digital strategy, Innovation, GTM Strategy and Product management. He is a thought leader in the digital money and policy space, having authored many articles and reports for Citi’s flagship Digital Money Symposium. Seshadri Rengarajan SVP, TTS Digital Analysis & Insights, Citi Seshadri Rengarajan leads the TTS Digital Analysis and Insights team and partners with TTS businesses on digital strategy and transformation engagements. Prior to Citi, Seshadri was a strategy consultant with Monitor Deloitte, where he advised several Fortune 100 clients in the telecoms and technology industries on their growth and go to market strategies. Seshadri is a thought leader in digital disruption, digital money, and digital policy topics.