The governor of the Riksbank, Sweden's central bank, has laid out a tentative timeframe for the e-krona, its planned digital currency.
On April 15, Bloomberg reported that Riksbank governor Stefan Ingves said that five years “is a reasonable target” for the Swedish central bank to have an operational digital currency. While this is the first time that the bank has put out such an estimate, earlier optimism for the e-krona means this timeline is not quite as rapid as some might have predicted.
A member of the European Union, Sweden has long elected to remain outside of the eurozone in favor of its national currency, the krona. Sweden's digital payments ecosystem is extremely active, with cash usage in the country among the lowest in the world.
Many consider Sweden a frontrunner within Europe to release a functional central bank digital currency, or CBDC, because it is free of the need to appease the wide range of national interests that any digital euro will need to address.
The Riksbank itself has always been fairly conservative in its estimates of timing for a CBDC launch.
At the end of last year, a leading official in Sweden announced the launch of a review of an e-krona's practicality that is not scheduled to end until November 2022.