The Baltic country of Estonia has reportedly given up on its ambitious plans for a national digital currency pegged to the euro and available for all its citizens, according to Bloomberg. Estonian officials have scaled back those plans after receiving sharp criticism from European Central Bank President Mario Draghi and other banking officials.
Draghi was among the first to reject the Estcoin proposal and offered a blunt assessment of the idea in comments last September: I will comment on the Estonian decision: no member state can introduce its own currency. The currency of the euro zone is the euro.”
Estonia has been aggressively pursuing technology initiatives and had reportedly planned to use the Estcoin as both a national currency for its own citizens and an official currency for foreign nationals who have taken advantage of the country’s e-residency initiative. Now that Estonian officials have bowed to European Union pressure, the Estcoin will apparently be restricted to e-residency use only.
Estonian IT head Siim Sikkut told Bloomberg:
“We agreed in discussions with politicians that Estcoin will proceed as a means for transactions inside the e-resident community. Other options aren’t on the table. We’re not building a new currency.”