European bank officials discuss the potential benefits of central bank digital currency

European bank officials discuss the potential benefits of central bank digital currency

European Central Bank (ECB) officials highlighted the benefits of the central bank's digital currency (CBDC), while emphasizing caution in the speech made by the Bank for International Settlements on May 27.

Vitas Vasiliauskas – Chairman of the Board of the Bank of Lithuania and a member of the ECB Governing Council – delivered a speech on April 12th at the Breton Forest Commission meeting “Managing the Soft Leap of the Global Economy”. Vasiliauskas specifically considers whether CBDCs should be wholesale, retail or two. Both have both.

Vasiliauskas emphasized that CBDC should serve as a medium of exchange, means of payment and value storage, reflecting the quality of current central bank funds, rather than traditional reserve accounts or private crypto assets. If the retail CBDC is released, it will be open to the public, and the wholesale CBDC can only be opened to financial institutions.

Among the potential benefits of CBDC, Vasiliauskas will increase the efficiency of payment and securities settlement and reduce counterparty credit and liquidity risk. Interest-bearing retail CBDC is said to improve monetary policy transmission and strengthen policy delivery of deposit and lending rates. However, Vasiliauskas further warned:

“In some countries, the amount of cash in circulation is declining. This may mean that one day, even if it looks like a distant prospect – everyone must have a private entity account to pay. Unfortunately, this may lead to finance. The rejection rate is rising."

Vasivouskas said that retail CBDC will ensure that people continue to receive funds from the central bank, which may ultimately have a positive impact on financial stability. At the same time, a key issue that central banks should consider is CBDC's compliance with money laundering requirements and the application of anti-money laundering (AML) standards to anonymous forms of CBDC.

In early May, the European Central Bank issued a report on the possible impact of digital currency on economic development and monetary policy, which clearly stated that if cryptocurrency becomes a reliable substitute for cash and deposits, this effect may occur. They do not realize the function of money.