A recent ECB announcement highlights cryptocurrency as a topic of interest for discussion with the youth.
The European Central Bank is requesting the public to send in their questions on different topics, prominent among these being cryptocurrencies. The selected issues will be discussed in the upcoming ECB Youth Dialogue, an initiative that facilitates talks between its policymakers and youths from different countries.
The announcement posted on the ECB website on Thursday listed cryptocurrencies and blockchain as one of the three major topics to be discussed at the forum. The other two probable topics are the global economic crisis and Europe’s economy.
In the request, persons aged between 16 and 35 are urged to send in questions for the ECB President Mario Draghi to discuss via a series of videos that will be aired on February 12. Questions can be sent in via a specified Twitter handle or a Facebook post.
A Focus on Cryptocurrencies
The announcement placed quite a bit of emphasis on the digital currency industry, even posting sample questions as “inspiration” to get the youth thinking in the right direction. It also has an ECB explainer on the topic and a video to help interested persons prepare their questions.
In addition to this, the ECB Twitter page also highlights bitcoin as a potential topic for discussion. The post already has more than 18,000 votes as at press time and the public has until January 23 to send in their question on either social networking platform.
Even though the ECB as an organization is directing attention to the topic for the first time, its president Draghi has aired his opinion on it several times in the past. In November last year, he stated that the impact of the cryptocurrency industry on the European economy was still limited and for this reason, it was too early to impose regulations.
He expressly stated that digital currencies did not pose a threat over his organization’s oversight over the Euro. He added that while investors should “cherish” such innovations, it would be wise for them to be wary of the potential risks involved.
He had prior to this told the Parliamentary Committee on Economic and Money Affairs that the authority to regulate virtual currency was not within the scope of his institution’s powers.
A Different Stance
However, it is worth noting that on Thursday, Pierre Gramegna, a Luxembourg minister hinted at the fact that the European Union might soon be regulating the cryptocurrency space. He said that this was to ensure that the system is not misused for criminal purposes.
He highlighted some benefits of virtual currency, citing convenience, popularity and simplicity as some of the reasons why the technology is here to stay. He says that this is the main reason why they need regulation, at least to a certain extent.
An ECB governing council member had also mentioned in November that various central banks are contemplating digital currency regulation as China had done. But he reiterated that the crypto market is not big enough to create financial instability.