Report: Bank of France to test digital currency in 2020

France is looking to test central bank-issued digital currency in 2020, according to news site AFP. 

In a Wednesday conference hosted by the French Prudential Supervision and Resolution Authority (ACPR), the central bank’s governor François Villeroy de Galhau said that the bank will start testing digital currency soon and “will launch a call for projects before the end of the first quarter of 2020,” per the AFP report

According to Villeroy de Galhau, France is keen on contributing to the digital currency innovation. However, he also cautioned that the country needs to experiment with the new technology “in a serious and methodical manner.” 

The news came on the heels of France’s Minister of the Economic and Finance Bruno Le Maire calling for the creation of a “public digital currency” at a European Union (EU) meeting. The minister previously expressed his opposition against Facebook’s cryptocurrency project Libra, saying that France would block the project if it fails to address concerns over the potential threat it poses to monetary sovereignty.  

Meanwhile, People’s Bank of China is also experimenting with its own digital currency, DC/EP. The bank said that it has been researching this new technology since 2014 and is “almost ready” to launch it. However, a recent announcement from the bank clarified that it is still testing and researching the digital yuan, without disclosing the launch date.