Sweden’s central bank and other countries in Europe, as well as the rest of the world, are working on their own national digital currency.
— xcgabriel (@xcgabriel) February 23, 2020
The Sweden’s central bank plan
In a statement, the Riksbank outlined their plans, writing:
“The main purpose of the pilot is for the Riksbank to increase its knowledge of a central bank digital krona.”
So, it doesn’t mean to issue an e-krona, nor provide any indication about how it will be designed as of yet.
It won’t yet be issued to the public, rather “simulated users” will be able to hold the coin in a cryptocurrency wallet, and use it to make payments, deposits and withdrawals. Apparently, sending money will be as easy as sending a text – at least according to the website.
The pilot project will run until February 2021, and then the Riksbank will make a decision whether to build the e-krona or not. They first came up with the idea for the digital currency in September 2017, shortly before Bitcoin peaked at $20,089.
Sweden still lags behind
The project lags behind other countries, like Senegal, Cambodia and the Bahamas, who have all been trialling real Central Bank Digital Currencies with real citizens. Cambodia has been on the crypto train since July 2019, and the project allows anyone with a Cambodian phone number to join.
In 2016, Senegal released their own CBDC, called the eCFA which is based on its national currency. Similarly, the Bahamas developed its own cryptocurrency called Sand Dollars (how fitting), which was released in 2019.
However, with a GDP that outweighs the other three countries all put together, Sweden’s e-krona may have a vastly more significant impact on the global economy, and how the rest of the world views CBDC.
Other countries exploring the crypto-question
Dubai has also launched its own digital asset, called EmCash.
In the meantime, Switzerland declared the country is against the state digital currency because too many risks are involved, while Japan recently said it is studying how to create its own crypto minted by the central bank.
So, a lot of countries all around the world are pursuing development but at the moment no project appears to be concrete.