Slovakia adds cash rule to constitution due to fear of digital euro.
On June 15, Slovakia passed a vote to amend its constitution, codifying the right to use cash as a method of payment. The new legislation, sponsored by the Sme Rodina party, was drafted as a precautionary measure against the proposed digital euro. The amendment was deemed necessary to protect Slovakia’s financial sovereignty against any orders from outside entities that may impose digital euro as the only payment option.
Euractiv reports that alongside legislation codifying the right to use cash, Slovakia will also amend its constitution to protect shopkeepers’ rights to refuse cash for payments of goods and services. This is meant to protect shopkeepers from robberies and exposure to germs, and to provide an exclusion to existing cash-acceptance laws for shops offering card-only vending machines.
The European Union has been exploring the potential development and implementation of a central bank digital currency (CBDC) or digital euro. Some experts believe this presents an intrinsic threat to personal privacy since the currency would be entirely centralized and allow a single government entity to control transactions conducted with it. There’s also the issue of competition, as CBDCs could potentially threaten companies and private sector banks that profit from offering credit solutions for the underbanked.