E-Money is becoming a popular idea with many countries, and Iceland looks to be jumping on board. On June 14, it was announced that the Financial Supervisory Authority (FME), which is Iceland’s only financial regulator, had approved the first e-money firm to begin operations in the country.
Monerium, which is a blockchain company based in Iceland, will be the creator of the new e-money. While not turning away from fiat currencies to digital, this is still a big step for the country.
Digital payments have been widely accepted in Europe for some time. The U.K. gave Wirex the first e-money license in the country last August and this currency has thrived ever since. Iceland is hoping the same will be true for Monerium.
This is part of the reason why Iceland sees this as an easy transition. With such a wide acceptance across the continent, and the fact that blockchain technology has become so popular as a platform for digital currencies, this looks like a true winner for the country.
It also continues a decision made by the country in September 2018. At that time, Iceland opted to move from cryptocurrency mining and instead focus on blockchain operations. Because of the volatility of SegWitCoin (BTC) and the fact that the price had seen a dramatic drop in such short order, it was concluded that the use of this technology made for a smarter policy moving forward.
“We strongly believe that when the whole bitcoin thing has settled down to some kind of a level that is not as crazy as it was a year ago… We believe there’s another wave that crops up that will utilize these infrastructures that have been built up during the bitcoin mining phase,” explained Halldór Jörgensson, chairman of the Borealis Data Center in Reykjavik.
The blockchain technology for Monerium is backed by ConsenSys. They have already been approved to provide payment services using Ethereum blockchain. ConsenSys helped to put $2 million in seed money into a funding round for Monerium in January.
Monerium has also been approved by a major European regulatory firm giving them the ability to provide e-money services using this technology across the European Economic Area.
The move to switch to e-money is becoming a popular idea across Europe. Gibraltar is already on their way to only using blockchain technology while the Marshal Islands are in the final phase of turning to using cryptocurrency exclusively. Iceland is not as far along as these two nations, but is moving in that direction.
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