The Digital Euro Association (DEA) has become aware of an op-ed on the digital euro entitled “The digital euro concerns the whole society, not only finance” (FR) (DE), initiated by Tristan Dissaux (DEA Expert), Jézabel Couppey-Soubeyran, Wojtek Kalinowski, and Dominique Plihon. The op-ed seeks to highlight the importance of including a broad range of citizens in the debate around the creation of the digital euro, a central bank digital currency (CBDC) for the euro area issued by the European Central Bank (ECB)
Key points highlighted by the initiators include:
Greater inclusion of associations and individuals in the digital euro project. “We [...] call on the ECB to truly involve society in the current investigation of the digital euro and to broaden the discussion to the objectives that could be pursued with the help of this monetary innovation.” In particular, they criticize the large share of financial experts in the ECB’s market advisory group (MAG).
Initiate a public debate about the digital euro within the Member States. “We therefore call on the European Parliament to take on this issue as part of its monetary dialogue with the ECB.”
The DEA Board supports the sentiments expressed in this op-ed. In July 2021, before the ECB announced the start of their digital euro project and the MAG, the Digital Euro Association published a call to action on our website. In this call to action, we proposed the establishment of a Digital Euro Lab, a diverse group of experts who would be tasked with researching the digital euro. The proposed Digital Euro Lab was to not only be composed of experts from the financial sector, but also researchers, associations, and industrial companies from the private sector.
Soon afterward, the ECB announced that the MAG, a group of 30 experts, would be involved in the digital euro project and contribute to the investigation phase of the digital euro. While we strongly support the engagement of a wide array of stakeholders around the digital euro and the launch of the MAG, we do agree with the op-ed authors that the share of financial experts in the MAG is unduly high and therefore lacks experts from other key sectors. Furthermore, individuals (the general public), i.e., the actual users of the digital euro, should also be included in the dialogue on the digital euro.
If you would like to check out the op-ed, you can find it here. You can show your support by adding your name to the list of supporters here.