European Central Bank Exploring Blockchain Tech Applications

In a new report, the European Central Bank (ECB) has said it is investigating blockchain use within its securities and payments settlement systems.

AccessTimeIconFeb 17, 2016 at 3:15 p.m. UTC
Updated Sep 11, 2021 at 12:08 p.m. UTC
10 Years of Decentralizing the Future
May 29-31, 2024 - Austin, TexasThe biggest and most established global hub for everything crypto, blockchain and Web3.Register Now

The European Central Bank (ECB) has said that it is investigating how it might apply blockchain technology for its own purposes.

The statement was made in a new consultation report on the technologies used to run the region's securities and payments settlement systems and how they can be improved.

The ECB said that, as part of its consultation process, it is looking at how blockchain applications could improve or hamper this market infrastructure.

The report notes:

"As part of its vision, the Eurosystem intends to assess their relevance for the different services it provides to the banking communities (payments, securities settlement as well as collateral). This investigation will identify opportunities that these new technologies may provide, as well as the challenges that they create."

The ECB has spoken out about digital currencies in the past, describing them as “inherently unstable” in a report published last March. At the time, the central bank acknowledged that the technology could have an impact on its ability to conduct monetary policy.

Yet officials from the ECB have previously expressed an openness to digital currencies and blockchain tech more generally.

Yves Mersch, a member of the central bank's executive board, told attendees at a banking conference last month in Paris that innovative new payments technologies like the blockchain have the potential to disrupt card-based payments and the broader financial system.

"These technologies, of which Blockchain is probably the best-known example, can potentially have a profound impact on whole financial 'ecosystem'," he said.

According to Financial News, the publication comes as Target2-Securities, a new platform that will enable integrated settlement of securities across the EU, has been experiencing technical issues.

Image via S-F /


Please note that our privacy policy, terms of use, cookies, and do not sell my personal information has been updated.

CoinDesk is an award-winning media outlet that covers the cryptocurrency industry. Its journalists abide by a strict set of editorial policies. In November 2023, CoinDesk was acquired by the Bullish group, owner of Bullish, a regulated, digital assets exchange. The Bullish group is majority-owned by; both companies have interests in a variety of blockchain and digital asset businesses and significant holdings of digital assets, including bitcoin. CoinDesk operates as an independent subsidiary with an editorial committee to protect journalistic independence. CoinDesk offers all employees above a certain salary threshold, including journalists, stock options in the Bullish group as part of their compensation.

Learn more about Consensus 2024, CoinDesk's longest-running and most influential event that brings together all sides of crypto, blockchain and Web3. Head to to register and buy your pass now.