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The Central Bank of Ireland has confirmed it will establish an Innovation Sandbox Programme in 2024. The programme will provide regulatory advice and support for innovative projects that promote better outcomes for society and the financial system, says CBI.

The CBI announcement follows a three-month public consultation, and comes alongside a Feedback Statement to a consultation on the Central Bank’s approach to engagement with innovation in the financial sector, in which Blockchain Ireland made a significant contribution.

The Central Bank announcement said the Innovation Sandbox Programme will take a thematic approach, with themes and a call for potential participants to issue in the coming months, and the first programme to commence later this year (Quarter 4). The programme will be open to applications from anyone developing innovations for the financial system and will have a transparent application process.

Feedback received on the Central Bank’s approach has been broadly positive, reports CBI. The consultation responses included a number of recommendations, which the Central Bank has carefully considered and has made some adjustments where appropriate. Given the predominantly EU-basis of most regulatory requirements and the importance of protecting consumers interests, the Central Bank does not propose to provide derogations or waivers from regulation. The sandbox will apply the regulatory framework proportionally, with an outcome focused, risk based approach.

CBI reported that stakeholders also welcomed the Central Bank’s plan to enhance its Innovation Hub to deepen its engagement with the sector, placing an increased focus on regional engagement to support innovation across Ireland.

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