The Bank of Japan plans to start testing the feasibility of a digital yen with major Japanese commercial banks next spring, sources familiar with the matter said Thursday.

The experiment, which will allow ordinary consumers to participate, is aimed at checking whether money deposits and withdrawals via bank accounts at commercial banks can be carried out smoothly with the use of a central bank digital currency (CBDC), the sources said.

The BOJ has taken the position that it has no plans to issue a digital yen, but has begun checking the stability and feasibility of payment systems should it decide to issue such a virtual currency in the future.