The Bank of Spain approved a project to issue stablecoins pegged to the euro. The asset will be tested as part of a financial sandbox created to develop the digital euro (CBDC).

Spain Launches Testing of Euro-Linked Stablecoin EURM

The Bank of Spain (Banco de España) approved the project of fintech company Monei, which will create a stablecoin EURM linked to the euro. This was reported by the local media.

The token will be developed and released in a financial sandbox created as a controlled environment for a digital euro pilot project being developed by the European Central Bank (ECB).

EURM will be backed by the physical euro at a 1:1 ratio. Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria (BBVA) and CaixaBank Group will be the issuers. A limited number of users will get access to the token within the testing framework. They’ll have to indicate their mobile phone number and confirm their identity by means of video identification. 

It’ll be possible to deposit a EURM wallet via the Bizum instant payment system, using physical euros — the system will automatically convert them into digital currency. Users will then be able to send digital tokens to other users or registered companies. However, as part of the stablecoin testing, the transfer amount can’t be more than €10.

According to Álex Saiz Verdaguer, CEO of Monei, EURM has nothing in common with the digital euro developed by the ECB. However, it could become the basis and example for CBDC testing in the future, not only in Spain, but throughout the Eurozone. Verdaguer said the product could be a pilot test for the ECB.

The ECB representative stressed that EURM wasn’t a prototype or pilot project for the digital euro. However, the bank was ready to see the results of the token’s testing. The European Commission stated that the results of the Monei tests wouldn’t have any bearing or influence on the development of the digital euro.

Recall that recently, the members of the European Commission insisted that the political motives of the digital euro should play a fundamental role in the CBDC pilot project.

A few days ago it also became known that the final vote on the MiCA bill, which aims to ensure the crypto market regulation, had to be postponed again. The new tentative voting date is April 2023. The reason for the postponement was delays in translating legislative documents into all necessary languages. 

It’s worth noting that almost a year has passed since the Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs (ECON) approved the bill, and European Union officials discussed it. At that time, the final vote on the draft has already been postponed, from November 2022 to February 2023. Remarkably, the reason was also cited as technical difficulties of translation. e-Money representatives closed its own project of the stablecoin EEUR, accusing the legislators that MiCA lobbies the interests of commercial banks.

Author: Nataly Antonenko
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