The European Commission have said that there should be no rivalry between public and private digital currency solutions.

Speaking on the subject of digital currencies and the future of a digital euro the European Commission said:

A digital euro solution should not crowd out solutions that come from the private sector. In the ECB report, it is highlighted that such a solution would be complementary to private sector opportunities. There should not be rivalry or competition.

Eric Ducoulombier, head of retail financial services and payment unit, European Commission

In light of the ECB’s recent discussions and launch of a public consultation on the possible creation of a digital euro, Ducoulombier emphasised the role the private sector should play.

Ducoulombier notes that it is vital to have this debate right now and that it is a positive sign that the debate is already well underway in Europe, especially given the emergence of digital based payment solutions such as Libra. 

In order to foster the progress being made by such bodies Ducoulombier stated that a high level of complementarity between the payment solutions developed by the private sector and necessary intervention of public authorities would need to be achieved, and may require these solutions occupying different parts of the market. 

There is no intention by EU institutions to throw banana skins in the way of creating private sector solutions.

Eric Ducoulombier, head of retail financial services and payment unit, European Commission


The European Commission stated that significant shifts in payments trends due to covid-19 have lit a fire under the push for digital currencies. Hand-in-hand with increasing consumer confidence around using digital payments has come reluctance toward using cash.

At a virtual IMF event this week, it is reported that Christine Lagarde, ECB president:

A digital euro will never be a substitute for cash. It is a very good supplement and a very good partial substitute for what was being done physically

Christine Lagarde, ECB president