ECB’s Christine Lagarde says Brussels will soon present digital euro law

The European Commission will present a legislative proposal for a digital euro in the near future, said European Central Bank President Christine Lagarde. European lawmakers should define the legal tender of the new currency and determine its privacy features.

The European Commission will propose legislation for the digital currency of the euro zone

Eurozone authorities have already made good progress in exploring the rationale and potential benefits and risks of a central bank digital currency (CBDC), the head of the European Central Bank (ECB) said. during a conference dedicated to the digital version of the common currency.

In a video message, Christine Lagarde said that their efforts are now focused on the concrete design of the digital euro and its integration into a legal framework. This is an area where EU lawmakers will play an important role, the senior leader stressed and revealed:

I therefore look forward to the legislative proposal on the establishment of a digital euro which the European Commission will shortly be proposing.

The executive body in Brussels is one of the main participants in the European Union’s complex legislative process, along with the European Parliament and the Council of the EU, and is responsible for suggesting new laws.

In her statements, published on by the ECB, Christine Lagarde underlined that the co-legislators must now define the balance between competing public objectives. She focused on two aspects in particular: the protection of privacy and the legal tender of the digital euro.

New legislation to determine the privacy features and legal tender status of the digital euro

Recalling that 43% of respondents in the public consultation on the digital euro ranked privacy as the most important feature of the future CBDC, the president of the euro area monetary authority acknowledged that for the room is attractive, it must meet people’s expectations in this regard.

We should at least offer a level of confidentiality equal to that of current electronic payment solutions“, stressed Christine Lagarde, while ruling out complete anonymity, as offered by cash, citing anti-money laundering rules and the need to limit the use of the digital euro for investments. However, she did not rule out greater privacy for low-value, low-risk, and offline payments.

Developing the other aspect she highlighted, Christine Lagarde insisted on the fact that cash, as central bank money, is legal tender and clarified that the same principle should apply to digital version of the euro, allowing citizens to use it to pay everywhere. This should include digital payments in physical stores, e-commerce and peer-to-peer payments, detailed the ECB director.

In her speech, Christine Lagarde also highlighted the importance of future Crypto Asset Markets (MiCA) legislation and listed the emergence of cryptocurrencies like bitcoin and ether among the key developments leading to a transformation. potentially disruptive to the traditional payment model.

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