Experts told Reuters the project would have been the first time a government of a developed economy had engaged in collaborating with a cryptocurrency exchange, as fintech startups and other mints race to disrupt the space.
Though the hope to realize this project is still alive, due to such a delay, the United Kingdom will lose the position of a pioneer that it should have had if the Royal Mint had managed to fulfill its first plan to issue its gold-backed coins in time.
Previously regarded as an exciting development, both for the Royal Mint and for the cryptocurrency sector, the decision follows a breakdown in relations between the Royal Mint and its development partner, CME.
The plans would have seen the Royal Mint issuing digital gold in the form of a cryptocurrency, RMG.
According to Reuters, the plans fell through after a partnership with North American CME Group failed with the British government refusing the proposal to have the tokens trade on a cryptocurrency exchange. The company backpedaled after a major management reshuffle that allegedly led to a dwindling interest in digital assets.
RMG was originally scheduled to launch in the fall of 2017.
It was purported by one of Reuteers' sources that "priorities shifted" away from digitalization the moment the CEO, Phupinder Gill retired in late 2016, as well as the subsequently retirement of Sandra Ro, the CME's head of digitalization, last July. "Sadly, due to market conditions this did not prove possible at this time, but we will revisit this if and when market conditions are right", it said.
"It is not correct to say we have "de-emphasised" digitization and remain committed to pursuing our digitization strategy".
The Royal Mint pretends that all future plans were halted, however, such a great partnership coming to an end, at present it does not seem like the century-old institution will be making any progress lately.