Digital euro proposal from European Commission seeks universal approval

On June 28, the European Commission unveiled its proposed legislative plan for a digital euro, with the intention of establishing it as a widely embraced and readily available payment method.

The announcement emphasized the importance of enabling individuals to acquire digital euros through their banks upon request, ensuring convenient access and safeguarding against the risk of exclusion for citizens.

Share customer data

The European Commission published its legislative plans to underpin a digital, saying it would ensure Europeans can pay digitally for free across the currency zone.

As part of a distinct proposal, the commission has put forward a suggestion wherein banks, insurers, and funds would be required to share customer data with fintech firms in exchange for compensation in a bid to foster the advancement of digital finance. 

The proposal further encompasses key provisions such as free essential digital euro services, robust privacy protection measures, and the facilitation of offline payments. These initiatives aim to enhance convenience, inclusivity, and data security within the digital euro framework.

Also worth noting is that the proposal explicitly prohibits any “programming” of the central bank digital currency (CBDC) to impose restrictions on the types of goods it can be utilized for.

However, officials clarify that conditional payments, such as monthly utility bills or intricate smart contracts, can still be facilitated using the digital euro as an underlying mechanism. 

In the accompanying press release from the European Central Bank, the European Commission underscored the significance of enabling individuals to easily obtain digital euros from their banks upon request, ensuring accessibility and avoiding exclusion of citizens. 

Big business impact

In preparation for critics, the European Commission also released June 28 post from Fabio Panetta, a Member of the Executive Board on the ECB, and Valdis Combrovskis, and Executive Vice-President of the European Commission to highlight the practical benefits of the digital euro for consumers. 

According to estimates provided by the European Commission, digital payments for small operators can range from 1.5% to 5% per transaction, coupled with additional expenses ranging from five to 15 euros per transaction.

The advent of a digital euro could disrupt this dynamic by offering a more accessible and cost-effective payment solution, potentially reducing transaction fees and empowering businesses to provide more competitive pricing to consumers.

Moreover, a digital euro would likely enhance the efficiency and speed of transactions, enabling near-instantaneous settlements and reducing the reliance on intermediaries. 

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