On Monday, the negotiating teams in the European Parliament’s LIBE Committee will discuss amendments for the first time. Pirate Party MEP Patrick Breyer, his group’s lead negotiator in the LIBE Committee, is requesting fundamental changes to the proposal:
“For the digital euro to be worthy of its name and have meaning and added value compared to credit cards and cryptocurrencies, digital cash must be as anonymous and free to use as notes and coins – not just when both parties are physically present. The introduction of digital cash is overdue in the current reality of life in the information age.
As there is no limit to the amount of cash we can hold and pass on, there should be no limit to the amount of digital euros in our hands. And just as cash can be used to make confidential payments and controversial donations anonymously and without fear of disclosure, trace-free payments in digital euros must not be made impossible or limited to an unknown and variable amount, as proposed by the EU Commission. The justification of wanting to combat money laundering and terrorism is just a pretext for gaining more and more control over our private transactions. Where every payment is recorded and stored forever, there is a threat of hacker attacks, unauthorised investigations and chilling government control over every payment.
Cash is financial freedom without the pressure to justify it. What medicines or sex toys I buy is nobody’s business. For thousands of years, societies around the world have lived with privacy-preserving cash. This financial freedom must also be guaranteed in the information age. We need to find ways to take the best features of cash into our digital future.”
Specifically, Breyer calls for decentralised offline payments directly between end devices to be permitted not only in physical presence (amendment 76) and for them not to be subject to any disadvantages compared to cash, such as limits (amendments 203-205, 207).