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Sweden thinking to be first with national digital currency

Staff Writer | November 17, 2016
The Central Bank of Sweden is considering issuing a national digital currency to solve the problem of a dramatic drop in the domestic use of cash.
Cecilia Skingsley
Technology   Riksbank Deputy Governor Cecilia Skingsley
The so-called e-krona may be introduced within two years.

“The less those of us living in Sweden use bank notes and coins, the clearer it becomes that the Riksbank needs to investigate whether we should issue electronic money as a complement to the money we have today,” Riksbank Deputy Governor Cecilia Skingsley told the Financial Times.

Sweden's Riksbank is the world’s oldest central bank, and was the first to issue paper banknotes in the 1660s.

Alternative methods of payment have been gradually replacing traditional cash in Scandinavian countries.

The Danish government is considering the option of going completely cash-free for the country’s shops and services.

The quantity of notes and coins in circulation in Sweden has fallen by 40 percent since 2009, with a rise in online shopping and card payments. Swedes are among the world’s biggest credit card users.


 

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