- Sweden, which is already mostly a cashless economy, is planning to take the next step and introduce its own E-currency.
- The switch towards the digital form of money in the country has been rapid over the past decade.
- The new development will push the country towards digital currencies and payments, and away from notes and coins.
Sweden is known far and wide for being one of the most cashless economies around the globe when it comes to its daily transactions. However, the country’s central bank plans to take this to a whole new level by creating a landmark test, based on blockchain tech. The bank’s hope is to eventually introduce an official electronic version of the krona.
As mentioned, the project will use the blockchain technology. According to the country’s central bank’s statement, published this Thursday — the project is expected to run by the end of February 2021. The bank also revealed that it wishes to find a user-friendly, simple model that would be easy to use and understand.
This move is likely to take the entire country much deeper into the world of digital payments and currencies.
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Sweden leading the digital finance charge
Interestingly enough, back in 2018, the Bank for International Settlements published an estimate that said that Scandinavia’s largest economy has the lowest amount of cash circulating. Basically, Sweden is already well on its way of becoming a completely cashless society, and as such, it is among the nations that have the best chances of easily switching to cryptocurrencies.
The drop in the use of cash has been fast in the country, with the number of people who opted to pay in bills and coins instead of electronically being at 13% in 2018, while it was at 39% at the start of the past decade.
In the Riksbank’s test, users will receive e-kronor that can be found in their digital wallets. The funds can then be used for making deposits and withdrawals, as well as payments via a mobile app. However, the test will go beyond that, incorporating wearable tech, such as smartwatches.
The tech is developed by Corda, a blockchain platform owned by the US-headquartered firm, R3. Riksbank also reported that the platform has added some differences from cryptocurrencies, which allowed it to create its own private network and make it accessible only through participation. The participation itself, however, will only be approved by the central bank.