Switzerland is known in the world of cryptocurrencies as a crypto-nation. The Crypto Valley or its real name Zug is a small Swiss city where many companies linked to the blockchain have established themselves to enjoy a tax advantageous. Although Switzerland is a country where cryptocurrencies are popular, the major financial institutions have been left out. However, at the latest news, Switzerland would formally consider the various possibilities for setting up a national cryptocurrency. A study on the opportunities and risks of an “e-franc” has been requested by the Swiss government.
E-franc, the Swiss national cryptographic currency
On the initiative of Cedric Wermuth, Deputy and Vice-President of the Swiss Social Democratic Party, the Federal Council decided to open a formal study on cryptocurrency. The Federal Council has stated that it is aware of the major financial and legal challenges behind the use of a national cryptocurrency. The study will also identify the different aspects of the adoption of the e-franc, legal, financial and economic. But before the study starts, the lower house of the Swiss Parliament has yet to approve the initiative, so for now no date has been formalized. When this is done, a special study office will be set up by the department in charge of finance.
An initiative that everyone does not look forward to
The idea of developing a national cryptographic currency has been instilled since February by the President of the SIX Financial Group Roman Lacher. From his point of view, a cryptocurrency controlled by the central bank would be good for the economy, because it would create a lot of synergy.
Not everyone shares the same opinion, some banks are in a completely different position and are wary of the use of e-francs. A month ago, a member of the Board of Directors of the Swiss National Bank, Andréa Maechler, gave his opinion that a cryptographic currency issued by the State could encourage the flight of capital, the cryptographic currencies of the private sector would be more advantageous and less risky.
A few weeks earlier, Alex Weber, Chairman of the Supervisory Board of UBS decided that the largest Swiss bank will not offer its customers to carry out transactions on Bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies. During his speech at Basel Messe, he called for tough controls by claiming that cryptographic currencies are open to abuse. According to Alex Weber, crypto-currencies are only highly speculative investment vehicles, and facilitate the financing of terrorist acts and money laundering.
Although he was against crypto-currencies, Alex Weber had recognized that the blockchain technology behind them offered many opportunities
Switzerland is not the first or the last to consider its own cryptocurrency
Switzerland is not the only country to take these measures, Sweden for example also plans to launch its own cryptocurrencies. The launch of the project was announced in 2016 with the support of the Swedish National Bank Riksbank. So far, Swedes continue to work actively for the implementation of e-krona. Last April, it was announced that Sweden was not going to use the blockchain for its currency. Instead, it focuses on the Tangle technology behind the IOTA cryptocurrency.
The first country to officially launch its cryptocurrency is Venezuela. Earlier this year, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro had the idea of launching a cryptocurrency based on oil.
Having a national cryptocurrency is an idea that many countries are considering. It’s not just Switzerland or Sweden, but Russia had already thought about setting up the Crypto-ruble. Although these projects are still under development, when they are finalized, it will be a new turnaround.