Sweden’s top central banker, Stefan Ingves, said the country may have a central bank digital currency (CBDC) within five years.
Riksbank Governor Ingves revealed a timeline on Thursday for the adoption of a CBDC, the e-krona, explaining the country is entering a post-cash era, according to a Bloomberg report.
Ingves said the five-year estimate “is a reasonable target” and described the speed of the e-krona investigation as a “success” for Sweden.
The bank said its current e-krona pilot project is expected to be completed early next year and has given itself the end of 2026 to continue its investigation, said the publication.
In Europe, Sweden remains at the forefront when it comes to adopting digital payments, with the country considering the option of becoming a completely cashless society.
In 2020, the Riksbank reported it had seen Sweden’s cash usage drop to its lowest level ever, with the COVID-19 pandemic accelerating the shift away from traditional money.
The Riksbank will be publishing an inquiry into the e-krona in November 2022.