The European Central Bank is betting on 2026

The European Union and the European Central Bank have been working on the huge project, the digital euro, since October 2020. Indeed, the means of payment are evolving and our habits and preferences are also following the same path. With cash becoming increasingly neglected, the time has come for electronic and contactless payments. Digital currencies are becoming an important issue and the digital euro therefore seems to be expected in a safe, accessible and robust form.

Digital Euro: an MNBC introduced within 5 years?

According to Christine Lagarde, President of the European Central Bank, the digital euro would be a reality within five years. This central bank digital currency (MNBC) would use the usual codes of our daily currency. Christine Lagarde therefore states that the project will be presented “like banknotes, but in digital form”, with the aim of making “daily payments in a simple, fast and secure way”.

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These elements were revealed during a virtual business conference. The conclusions and results of the public consultation on the creation of the euro were also discussed. Confidentiality is the topic mentioned most often by around 8,221 respondents, both professionals and individuals, who took part in the public survey. Everyone was invited to submit their suggestions and ideas for features for this future digital currency.

A European currency, safe and confidential

The results of the survey showed that data protection is the most anticipated element of the future digital euro. This aspect, mentioned in 41% of the responses, will indeed contradict the registry that China is trying to set up for its digital yuan. Security was mentioned as often by 17% of respondents as the availability of this European digital currency across the European Union. A survey resulting from this consultation should be presented later this year and also make a “significant” contribution to the Governing Council.

At the same time, experts from the ECB and 19 national central banks from member states of the European Union have already taken the time to identify possible scenarios for the creation of this digital euro. Including the significant abandonment of using cash as a means of payment. In addition, these experts have highlighted the importance of digital currencies such as the future digital euro, given the introduction of global private payment systems such as Libra, which for example became Diem last December. Accordingly, it raises “regulatory concerns and risks for financial stability and consumer protection”.

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