EDITOR NOTE: Customary to some policies capable of impacting society on a systemic level, Christine Lagarde, President of the European Central Bank, is opening up public commentary on the prospect of developing and implementing a digital Euro. With China and Canada poised to usher in the digitization of the global economy, the ECB understands the risks of being left behind in the wake of the new digital economy. But do they see the risks of entering it in the first place? Perhaps that’s what the commentary period will attempt to engage. In other words, is this particular round of innovation a devil’s bargain or a pandora’s box?
In a Twitter thread on Sunday, Christine Lagarde, former Managing Director of the IMF and current President of the European Central Bank, invited public commentary on a potential eurozone central bank digital currency (CBDC).
“We are still in the review and considerations stage, but we’ve just launched a public consultation so that consumers and Europeans can actually express their preference and tell us whether they would be happy to use a digital Euro just in the way they use a Euro coin or a Euro banknote knowing that it is central bank money that is available and that they can rely upon,” said Lagarde in a video from the thread.
The comments on a possible CBDC were part of a larger series of reflections on what Lagarde described as a “difficult year.”
Among the topics discussed were the impact of the Coronavirus and how the ECB responded, the importance of examining how bank policy could combat climate change, and how cryptocurrencies might better suit modern lifestyle choices on the part of Europeans.
“As Europeans are increasingly turning to digital in the ways they spend, save and invest, we should be prepared to issue a digital euro, if needed,” Lagarde wrote.
As Cointelegraph has previously reported, the ECB has a roadmap towards a more serious CBDC study in 2021. Additionally, central banks around the world are taking exploratory, if cautious, steps towards issuing CBDCs.
The Tweet also linked to a survey form where the chief banker invited Europeans to share their thoughts.
Originally posted on Coin Telegraph