France’s Central Bank Successfully Runs Pilot for Digital Euro Author: Jimmy Aki Last Updated: 22 May 2020 Several countries and regions have committed to giving the idea a shot with the discussion of a possible digital currency moving on. One of those countries is France, and the nation appears to be making some significant headway. A State-Backed Asset for Wholesale Purposes Yesterday, Banque de France – the European nation’s central banking institution- announced that it had successfully conducted a trial for a “digital Euro.” The test followed the call for new technology to back a possible digital asset, and as the announcement reads, the bank has done just that. The test is coming as the culmination of months of analyses and proposals from the bank. It had confirmed the objectives for a possible wholesale central bank digital currency (CBDC) in November. Last month, a document confirmed that it had started work on a CBDC that could help with improving interbank settlements. As the new announcement read, the bank tested a securities sale for a CBDC late last week. The success of this has given it more confidence, and it will push for more widespread testing. The bank was a tad vague in its announcement. However, it did confirm that the tests were more targeted towards wholesale applications of the digital asset, as opposed to possible retail uses. For now, the bank believes that a retail version of the asset will operate for regular customers – such as how Bitcoin does. Instead, a wholesale digital asset will work for institutional investment entities and commercial banks. The government has been working on developing a robust technological framework for the asset over the past few months. Spurred by the success of this test, the government has confirmed that it will continue to run similar trials over the next few weeks. CBDC Conversation Moves Along France is also not the only country to be making progress with a possible CBDC. China has also done something similar. China’s work with a state-backed digital asset began last October, as the country aimed to implement blockchain in all of its operations. However, the government has moved quickly and has led the world in CBDC testing so far. Last month, local news media confirmed that the government had conducted tests for its digital Yuan in several regions. These include Shenzhen, Suzhou, Xiongan new area, Chengdu, and the future site of the Winter Olympic Games. There’s still more work for the Chinese government to do. However, developing and rolling out a state-backed asset that can work effectively is still leading the pack for now. At the same time, several others are still considering possible state-backed cryptocurrencies. At the World Economic Forum, several countries – notably excluding the United States – banded together to research the potential applications of these assets in their financial frameworks. For now, however, most countries are looking to using crypto to solve some stringent financial issues – such as banking and cross-border payments. Retail applications appear to have taken a back seat.