Does Sweden need e-krona?

Interesting speech from Stefan Ingves, head of Sweden central bank- Riksbank. (Riksbank is the oldest central bank that shall celebrate its 350 years next year)

He says how we are revisiting history:

Central banks were established once upon a time to provide the general public with money in the form of banknotes and coins that did not entail any credit risk and that inspired confidence – what was known as central bank money. Gradually, the central banks were also given the responsibility for creating a uniform standard for banknotes. In Sweden, this took place in 1904, when the Riksbank was given a monopoly on issuing banknotes and commercial banks stopped issuing them.

It is scarcely surprising that a central bank in the Riksbank’s situation needs to at least investigate whether the arguments that have historically been so important – that the central bank shall provide the general public with assets and means of payment free of credit risk – no longer have such great significance. The questions that led to the Riksbank’s monopoly on issuing banknotes in 1904 are coming up again.

E-krona is a possibility. Who knows where paper money started in Europe could be the first country where it breathes its last breath:

Almost three months ago, the Riksbank published a first interim report which contains much of what I have talked about today. There is also a general description of how an e-krona might look. It should be available to all, banks, public authorities, companies and households. It should be possible to use it in real time, 24 hours a day and 365 days a year. It should be possible to use off-line, which means it could be used even where there is no access to a mobile network, for instance. 

Perhaps it could contain some element of anonymity, and perhaps it could be designed so that even groups who currently find digitalisation difficult to handle can easily use the e-krona. These are our initial thoughts and the reason why we published the report before we have thought it all through is that we want to have a dialogue with the market and other interested parties, as it is such a complex issue. The dialogues have now been initiated.

We have already identified a number of questions that require further analysis. These are questions regarding technology, legal issues and the effects of the ekrona on the economy and financial agents.2 The Executive Board of the Riksbank will soon take a stance on how to continue the work on these questions next year.

We will continue to be as open as possible and I would like to emphasise that what we are doing is examining the possibility of introducing an e-krona. No decisions have yet been taken.

I would like to conclude my speech by reminding you that it was in Stockholm that  the first modern banknote was created more than 350 years ago, and that it is here, in Sweden, that cash is currently taking its last breaths. Perhaps the Riksbank will be writing history again.


What a turn in history of money…


6 Responses to “Does Sweden need e-krona?”

  1. Should Australia issue an e- Australian Dollar? | Me Stock Broker Says:

    […] Just a few days ago, Riksbank chief Ingves spoke about whether and how Sweden should issue an e-krona. […]

  2. Should Australia issue an e- Australian Dollar? – Courtier en Bourse Says:

    […] Il y a quelques jours à peine, le chef de la Riksbank Ingves a parlé de la question de savoir si et comment la Suède devrait émettre une e-couronne . […]

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    […] Sweden, Australia, we now have some bit from New Zealand as well. Though, unlike the Sweden and Australia […]

  4. Discussions on issuing e-New Zealand Dollar… – Courtier en Bourse Says:

    […] Suède Australie nous avons maintenant quelques bits de Nouvelle-Zélande . Bien que, contrairement aux […]

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