Sweden Steps Into The World Of Digital Currencies!
Sweden, the world’s most cash-free society, is now considering stepping into the world of digital currencies.
Thu November 2022, Per Bolund, Sweden’s Minister for financial markets, announced that a study exploring the country’s future using digital currency has begun; it will probably be completed in November 2022, according to a Bloomberg report. Bolund highlighted the key features Sweden wants to see in its digital currency::
“IT IS VERY IMPORTANT THAT THE DIGITALIZED PAYMENTS MARKET OPERATES SAFELY AND IS AVAILABLE TO EVERYONE. DEPENDING ON HOW A DIGITAL CURRENCY IS DESIGNED AND WHAT TECHNOLOGIES ARE USED, IT CAN HAVE HUGE CONSEQUENCES FOR THE ENTIRE FINANCIAL SYSTEM.”Per Bolund
The country’s central bank, the Riksbank, is leading the research
Sweden’s Digital Currency Initiative comes as the trend towards digital payments has accelerated. In October, the Riksbank reported that less than a tenth of all payments in the country were made in cash. This is the lowest level seen in Swedish history. The central bank said the trend of not using cash was getting stronger as the epidemic accelerated the transition to digital payments.
In line with the public’s demand for cashless payments, the Riksbank has launched a pilot project with Accenture to design an electronic krona, or e-krona, based on digital ledger technology that can work as a complement to cash. The pilot is expected to finish in February 2021.
In October 2019, Riksbank executive Stefan Ingves had put forward his thoughts for e-krona, saying that it was entirely possible to make e-krona a legal tender:
“MY VIEW OF WHAT THE SWEDISH PAYMENT SYSTEM WILL LOOK LIKE IN THE FUTURE CAN BE EXPLAINED AS FOLLOWS. THERE MUST BE A LEGAL DEFINITION OF WHAT CONSTITUTES AN ELECTRONIC LEGAL TENDER, AND THERE MUST BE SUCH A LEGAL PAYMENT TO THE E-KRONA ISSUED BY THE STATE THROUGH THE RIKSBANK. IN ADDITION, IT SHOULD BE POSSIBLE TO PAY IN REAL TIME WITH E-KRONA AND ALSO TO MAKE AT LEAST SMALLER TRANSACTIONS BETWEEN CURRENCIES 365 DAYS 24/7. “