France may issue CBDC after crypto has been "battle-tested"

23 Mar, 2019 | Updated: 23 Mar, 2019
by Richard Allen
France may issue CBDC after crypto has been battle-tested

France’s central bank won’t be issuing its own cryptocurrency anytime soon. According to an assessment by Pauline Adam Kalfon, blockchain and cryptocurrency partner at PwC France, doing so would be a complex and time-consuming operation that could hurt the country’s already struggling economy, Forbes reports.

Kalfon admits that there have been several recommendations to further investigate the idea, but ultimately concluded it would be too complex of an undertaking.

“France's central bank may not be the best entity to drive forward such a digital currency project, which would sit within the prerogatives of the European Central Bank,” she said. Having said this, Banque de France could seize technological leadership by following European Central Bank guidance. It is clear that a European-level project would be very complex and challenging governance-wise, requiring alignment and the political consensus of all relevant stakeholders from each Member State.”

She added that, instead of central banks issuing their own digital currencies, it would be an interesting option to leave the digitization of fiat currencies to corporations like Facebook and JPMorgan.

"This would reduce the likelihood of potentially negative consequences on the economy arising from any central bank issuing a digital currency,” she said. Only once digital currencies have been “battle-tested by corporations” should central banks start making inroads into the realm of cryptocurrencies.

Read more: Will France ban all privacy-focussed cryptocurrencies?BIS manager says CBDCs will result in "unpredictable" consequences

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