Britain is considering creating a new "Britcoin," or central bank-backed digital currency, aimed at tackling some of the challenges posed by cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin. Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak told the Bank of England (BoE) last week to look into it. A BoE-backed digital version of sterling could allow businesses and consumers to hold accounts directly with the bank and therefore sidestep others when making payments, upending the lenders' role in the financial system.
Mr Sunak told a financial industry conference: "We're launching a new taskforce between the Treasury and the Bank of England to coordinate exploratory work on a potential central bank digital currency (CBDC)."
Other central banks are also looking at whether to set up digital versions of their own currencies, essentially widening access to central bank funds which only commercial banks can use at present.
This could speed up domestic and foreign payments and reduce financial stability risks.
Martin Bamford, chartered financial planner at Informed Choice, positively welcomed the Chancellor's announcement.Insurance Loans Mortgage Attorney Credit Lawyer
Mr Bamford even suggested it could help the City of London, as it attempts to grow outside of the EU after Brexit.
He said: "I think the City of London is obviously looking at its place in the world right now.
London to be handed post-Brexit boost with Britcoin as digital euro could be problematic (Image: GETTY)
Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak (Image: GETTY)
"And any innovation, including Britcoin, when it comes to financial services obviously helps.
"The City of London is known for its innovation already."
The ECB’s Governing Council is exploring the possibility of issuing a new central