The president of the European Central Bank, Christine Lagarde, has revealed the institution is looking to accelerate its efforts when it comes to digital currencies, and to get “ahead of the curve” on stablecoins.
Her words came during her debut press conference, where she pointed out that central banks like that of Britain, Canada, and of other countries have shown interest in the digital currency space, and urged the European Central Bank to get “ahead of the curve” when it comes to stablecoins.
Lagarde revealed the ECB is set to establish clear objectives for its digital currency task force by mid-2020. She noted her personal conviction is that “given the developments we are seeing, not so much in the bitcoin segment but in the stablecoin projects,” the ECB should get “ahead of the curve.”
We’d better be ahead of the curve, if that happens. Because there is clearly demand out there that we have to respond to.
It’s been widely discussed whether the ECB should launch its own digital currency. Earlier this month a report seen by Reuters showed the central bank was planning on launching one if cash usage drops across Europe, and if the private sector fails to create an efficient solution for cross-border payments.
The report noted an ECB-backed digital currency could have “far-reaching implications” for the financial system, not only when it comes to the way monetary policy is transmitted, as it could even render commercial banks redundant as people could simply be able to open accounts directly with the ECB
It’s worth noting that former ECB president Jean-Claude Trichet has in November made it clear he is “strongly against bitcoin” and believes the central bank has been “a little complacent” towards it.
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