War on cash: Dutch edition

Dutch Government has recently passed a law:

The draft law intends to reinforce the measures taken to prevent money laundering by limiting the use of large amounts of cash.

The draft law prohibits natural or legal persons trading in goods, in the course of their business or professional activities, from receiving or making a payment in cash in an amount equal to or greater than EUR 3 000, regardless of whether the transaction is carried out in a single operation or in several operations which appear to be linked. The ECB understands that the draft law is addressed to professional parties and will only affect consumers if they buy or sell goods from such a professional party. Transactions between consumers are not covered by the draft law.

ECB’s view:

The ECB understands that electronic payment instruments are increasingly used as the method of payment in the Netherlands, while the use of cash is declining. Nevertheless, as indicated above, cash is a well-established means of payment providing for immediate settlement of debts and direct  control over the payer’s spending, and also facilitates the inclusion of the entire population in the economy by allowing it to settle any kind of financial transaction in this way.

The ECB notes that cash could play an important role in the event of a disturbance in the payment systems, even though cash machines and other service points may also be affected as these are dependent on interaction with the account holding institutions. The ECB considers it important that all Member
States take appropriate measures to ensure that credit institutions and branches operating within their territories provide adequate access to cash services, in order to facilitate the continued use of cash..

 

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