CaixaBank becomes the only European bank selected by the ECB
By Leandra Monteiro
The European Central Bank (ECB) has selected CaixaBank and four other organisations to collaborate in the development a prototype of a digital euro. The institution launched a call with the aim of selecting entities to develop technology projects associated with the creation of the European digital currency. CaixaBank, the only European bank selected for the project and will be responsible for producing a prototype for peer-to-peer (P2P) online payments using the digital euro.
Starting September and until the end of this year, CaixaBank will be developing a mobile application that simulates the steps individuals will need to transfer digital euros to their account and/or transfer digital euros to other individuals.
CaixaBank’s extensive experience and leadership in the field of innovation and payment methods, as well as the quality of its services, internal capacity to develop such projects and its market coverage, have been some of the key aspects considered by the ECB during the selection process.
In April this year, the ECB launched a call for payment service providers, banks and other relevant market participants to unite and engage in the creation of prototypes for digital euro payment services aimed at customers. Fifty-four companies responded, spanning from banks to multinational technology companies.
In addition to CaixaBank, the other four companies selected for this stage will produce prototypes for other user interfaces of the digital euro, such as offline P2P payments, POS payments (including specific processes based on whether they are initiated by the business or the customer) and e-commerce payments.
The ECB is currently investigating how a digital euro could look like. If a digital euro should be issued, it would not replace cash or other existing payment methods, but instead complement them by becoming another payment option, thus contributing to advancing financial inclusion and accessibility.
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