World’s Oldest Central Bank Considers First National Digital Currency

In Currency, Technology by Dusty Croghan

The Central Bank of Sweden is considering being the first central bank in the world to issue a national digital currency called the e-krona. The e-krona is to be introduced within two years. Sveriges Riksbank known as Riksbanken is the central bank of Sweden and is the world’s oldest central bank. Riksbanken was the first to issue paper banknotes known today as cash in the 1660s and is the world’s oldest central bank while at the same time the 3rd oldest bank still in operation. It is also referred to as the Swedish National Bank and the Bank of Sweden.

Swenden’s neighbor Denmark is also considering the option of going completely cash-free for shops and services. Businesses such as clothing retailers, gas stations and restaurants will no longer be required to accept cash next year, the government of Denmark said on Wednesday.

“Society has changed so much that there is no longer a need for requirements on cash payments. Plus, cash has become tremendously expensive to handle due to security reasons” said Danish Chamber of Commerce spokesman Henrik Hytolft

A survey by the Dutch central bank among 1,340 retailers has shown that a large majority do not actively discourage their customers from making cash payments, and that over 80% believe customer preference should always be accommodated. 100% of retailers accept cash, while not all accept debit cards, and a relatively small number accept credit cards.