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Sweden is extending its CBDC pilot, the digital crown, to 2022

The Swedish Central Bank has extended an ongoing pilot project to create a digital version of the Swedish krona until 2022. as recently announced by the Nation’s Riksbank.

In combination with the service company Accenture, the “e-krona” pilot program, was launched to address what the Riksbank sees as “marginalizing cash”:

“The Riksbank sees potential problems with the marginalization of cash and has therefore started a pilot project to develop a technical solution for a digital central bank currency, an e-krona that can act as a supplement to cash.”

The latest announcement states that no decision has been made on how or if the e-crown will be issued. But A short whitepaper from 2020 describes how to use the Corda blockchain from R3, a private distributed ledger created for businesses and corporations. In contrast to public blockchains like Bitcoin and Ethereum, projects created on Corda are only accessible by invitation.

Sweden is extending its CBDC pilot, the digital crown, to 2022
Sweden is extending its CBDC pilot, the digital crown, to 2022

Central bank digital currencies, or CBDCs, are digital currencies that are exclusively issued and monitored by the central bank of a specific country. In contrast to currencies in public, decentralized and open source blockchains, CBDCs are not alternatives to the current fiat system.. Rather, they are designed as a possible protection against the spread of virtual currencies and only serve as a digital version of existing national funds.

The pilot program will continue over the course of next year and is expected to end in February 2022. The latest announcement indicates that testing offline functionality and involving external participants will be a priority in the coming months:

“The main goal of the pilot is for the Riksbank to expand its knowledge of a digital krona issued by the central bank. The project now runs until the end of February 2022. The aim for the next year is to further develop the technical solution, with a focus on performance, scalability, offline function tests and the involvement of external participants in the environment.

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