© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: The headquarter of the European Central Bank (ECB) is seen throughout sundown forward of the ECB?s governing council assembly later this week in Frankfurt, Germany, October 25, 2021. REUTERS/Kai Pfaffenbach/File Photo
FRANKFURT (Reuters) – The European Central Bank wants to concern a digital euro as yielding the space fully to private sector initiatives like stablecoins might endanger monetary stability and weaken the function of the central financial institution, ECB government board member Fabio Panetta mentioned.
The ECB has been engaged on designing a digital forex, a direct declare on the central financial institution very similar to within the case of money, however the venture might nonetheless take round 5 years earlier than an precise forex might be launched.
“Just as the postage stamp lost much of its usefulness with the arrival of the internet and email, so too could cash lose relevance in an economy that is becoming increasingly digital,” Panetta mentioned in a speech on Friday.
“If this scenario were to materialise, it would weaken the effectiveness of central bank money as a monetary anchor.”
Central financial institution digital money, whereas nonetheless going via business banks, could be a central financial institution legal responsibility, giving folks an extra stage of security that’s not impacted by the well being of particular person lenders or cost service suppliers.
But Panetta rejected the argument that private sector stablecoins – a type of cryptocurrency normally pegged to a standard forex so it maintains its worth – would make digital central financial institution money superfluous as private initiatives carry inherent danger which might be typically amplified in occasions of crises.
“History shows that financial stability and public trust in money require a widely used public money alongside private monies,” he mentioned.
For a central financial institution digital money to work, it wants to be broadly used so persons are constantly conscious that it’s an possibility on the desk.
“To this end, a digital euro would have to be designed in a way that makes it attractive enough to be widely used as a means of payment, but at the same time prevents it from becoming so successful as a store of value that it crowds out private money and increases the risk of bank runs,” he added.
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