On April 5, 2022, the European Commission launched a targeted consultation on the digital euro. The consultation aims to obtain stakeholders’ views on the needs and expectations of users regarding the digital euro and the manner in which it can be made available to the retail sector while preserving the legal tender status of cash euros. This consultation also collects opinions on the role of a digital euro for retail payments and the EU’s digital economy, on its impact on the financial sector and financial stability, as well as on aspects related to anti-money laundering rules and data protection.

In its response to the consultation, the Association expressed its opinion on the role that the e-euro could have for digital payments in consumer/merchant relations on certain points of settlement, making interbank transfers more fluid, facilitating financial inclusion by allowing access to the e-euro without having a bank account and making programmed payments.

In parallel to these general topics, the Association reminded the necessity of issuing a digital euro that is supportive and interoperable with the crypto-asset sector. In summary, Adan supports the consultation of the European Commission and the conduct of experiments by the Central Banks on the digital euro, whether the ECB or the Banque de France. In July 2021, the Association already welcomed the project initiated by the European Central Bank to conduct an investigation phase on the launch of the digital euro.

According to Adan, the digital euro must be designed to embrace all financial uses, including the crypto-asset sector: 

  1. The deployment of the digital euro must be complementary and interoperable with the stablecoin sector. While stablecoins and the digital euro do not serve the same functions or have the same timeline objectives (the digital euro is not expected to be issued until the next few years), it is necessary to encourage all initiatives at the heart of the digital economy.
  2. Adan underlines the specificities of blockchain technologies and their advantages for the issuance and management of a digital euro, as well as for the end users.
  3. Adan highlights the need for the European Commission to study all available blockchain solutions, including those with the highest possible degree of openness.

This consultation was an opportunity for Adan to remember that the use of blockchain technology for the issuance of a European CBDC could be beneficial and would offer a wide range of new opportunities in the monetary, banking and financial sector in terms of transparency, programmability, resilience, privacy and efficiency.

This publication includes the Associations’ paper responses to the European Commission as well as the technical note drafted by Adan on the challenges of issuing a digital euro to support the crypto-asset industry and public blockchain networks.