A Riksbank banner flies outside the headquarters of the Swedish central bank in Stockholm, Sweden
A Riksbank banner flies outside the headquarters of the Swedish central bank in Stockholm, Sweden. Johan Jeppsson/Bloomberg

Sweden is now one step closer to releasing its own Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC), with the launch of a pilot scheme that aims to examine the potential of the e-krona, Riksbank said in post on 20 February.

According to the announcement, the Swedish Central Bank will run the project in an “isolated test environment”, with participants playing out different scenarios to determine if the performance of the digital currency is sufficient and reliable. In its post the bank stated that if the e-krona is ever released to the public it would not replace cash, but complement it. Riksbank further outlined the various requirements that the e-krona has to address:

“The aim of the project is to show how an e-krona could be used by the general public. A digital krona should be simple, user-friendly as well as fulfill critical requirements for security and performance.”

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The pilot program will operate for one year, until February 2021, with participants storing their e-krona in a digital wallet. They will also be able to make payments, deposits and withdrawals through a mobile app. Users will also be able to make payments via wearables, such as smart watches and cards.

Bank in December, the Swedish Central Bank partnered with the Irish professional services company Accenture, which was chosen to build the pilot platform for its e-krona. The company was responsible for building the e-krona’s consumer-facing features, such as how the currency will be used on various mobile platforms.

In January, Riksbank also joined a working group with five other central banks and the Bank of International Settlements (BIS) in order to jointly research CBDC’s. The aim of the group was to have the banks, which already have expertise in exploring digital currencies, share their experience and study the potential use cases for CBDCs.

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