The European Commission announced on June 28 a legislative plan to underpin the digital euro, saying it would allow European citizens to make free digital payments across the currency area.
A version of the document seen by CoinDesk two weeks ago contained safeguards for privacy and financial stability, but many officials questioned the potential benefits of a new central bank digital currency (CBDC). is holding
In a post on the EU’s website on Wednesday, the commission’s deputy chairman, Valdis Dombrovskis, argued that the CBDC would bring “strategic advantages”.
In an article co-authored with European Central Bank (ECB) Managing Director Fabio Panetta, Dombrovskis wrote: “Amid heightened geopolitical tensions and vulnerability to attacks on critical infrastructure. , the digital euro will enhance the integrity and security of the European payment system,” he said, making it available “for everyone, everywhere and free of charge” and controlled by a small number of major companies, mainly in the United States. It has the potential to stimulate innovation and competition in a growing market.
This law does not enable a digital euro per se, as it is the ECB that decides whether to issue a CBDC. Officials argue that state-sponsored digital currencies offer features such as friend-to-friend payments and higher data protection standards that private payment instruments don’t always offer.
But despite years of technical work by central banks, many remain baffled, including legislators and governments who need to approve new legislation.
The initiative has also faced skepticism from commercial banks. For commercial banks, state-backed currencies are a competitor to their digital payment systems and an alternative to savings accounts.
“It is important to discuss the main features of the digital euro as well as broader questions about its added value,” Wim Mijs, CEO of the European Bankers Association, said in a statement. He argued that firm limits on holdings and transactions were needed to prevent the outflow of deposits from .
The bill seeks to ensure that the digital euro can be used offline and offer the same level of privacy as cash. CBDCs are prohibited from being “programmed” to limit the products that can be purchased, but they can be used to pay monthly utility bills or conditional payments such as more complex smart contracts. .
｜Translation: coindesk JAPAN
｜Editing: Toshihiko Inoue
｜Original: EU Publishes Digital Euro Bill Featuring Privacy Controls, Offline Guarantee