German banks in favor of the digital euro for payments within Europe

The digital euro would serve to boost online payments within Europe, according to the German Banking Association

A digital euro could give a decisive boost to the fragmented European market for electronic payments, says a statement released today by the Association of German Banks (BdB).

“As a convenient and risk-free digital payment method, it could be integrated into private sector payment procedures that can be used across Europe,” the document states, clarifying that it is not enough, however, to copy existing payment procedures in the present.

“A digital euro should provide an additional advantage, a ‘better’ form of cash,” they proposed from the BdB.

Experts from the European Central Bank (ECB) have been studying for some time a possible introduction of a digital variant of the common European currency, in response to the strong rise of so-called cryptocurrencies, such as Bitcoin and Ether.

The ECB decided in mid-July 2021 to take the preliminary work to the next level. In a two-year research phase, the focus has been on technology and data protection since October 2021, for example.

It is not yet decided whether there will be a digital euro. Still, it would be meant to supplement cash and not replace it. It would be launched at the earliest, not until 2026. “In order for introduction costs to be low, existing initiatives should be used,” added the BdB.

The association added that the banking initiative EPI (“European Payment Initiative”) for the establishment of a uniform payment system throughout Europe has done “valuable preliminary work to establish a European payment procedure.”

“EPI can be a basic element for commercial banks to make the digital euro available to citizens and companies in Europe through attractive offers,” the BdB pointed out.

Source: dpa

(Reference image source: Unsplash, in collaboration with Woliul Hasan)

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