ECB Studying Blockchain for Interbank Operations
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The European Central Bank is weighing whether blockchain can help it control the financial system if lenders move to distributed ledgers, Reuters reports, citing ECB board member Fabio Panetta.

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The ECB wants to find out how it could allow financial institutions to settle wholesale transactions between them on a blockchain. Panetta said:

"Despite the uncertainties surrounding DLT's potential, we want to be prepared for a scenario where market players adopt DLT for wholesale payments and securities settlement."

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The European watchdog is also eyeing to build a cross-chain bridge between blockchains, however, no details were revealed. In May, Panetta said that the ECB might roll out its own version of digital currency (digital euro) by 2026.

During a speech at the National College of Ireland, ECB's executive board member Fabio Panetta said that the regulator could at the end of 2023 decide to start a "realization phase" to develop and test the appropriate technical solutions and business arrangements for a digital euro. According to Panetta's estimates, this phase "could take three years."

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