Sweden studies how to save cash from extinction | Inquirer News
As online payments become norm in country

Sweden studies how to save cash from extinction

/ 05:10 AM January 14, 2024

Sweden studies how to save cash from extinction

Swedish fifty kronor banknotes. AFP

STOCKHOLM — The Swedish government said on Friday it wants to ensure that cash can be used for basic necessities, as electronic payments come to dominate transactions in the Scandinavian country.

Only 8 percent of Swedes had used cash for recent purchases in 2022 compared to 40 percent in 2010, according to a survey by the Swedish central bank, the Riksbank.


“We need to quickly take another look at being able to pay for certain things in cash. In particular, there are groups that, for various reasons, have trouble with electronic payment methods,” said Financial Markets Minister Niklas Wykman.


He said the ability to use cash is also important during a crisis.

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Payment system

The government said this was shown by the rare money-dispensing machines in service, amid a 30-percent jump in withdrawals following the Russian invasion of Ukraine in February 2022.

Such a trend was also seen in several other European countries, such as the Czech Republic and Slovakia, according to the European Cash Management Companies Association.

The government, which has launched a parliamentary panel on the subject, believes it should be possible to pay cash for certain products, such as food, fuel, and medicines.

“It is difficult to pay with cash in Sweden today,” said the head of the parliamentary commission, Dennis Dioukarev, who noted that 1 million Swedes are excluded from the digital world.

He said it is important that there be more than one payment system available. The commission is expected to present its proposals by the end of the year.


Sweden’s civil protection agency still recommends citizens keep cash available, although most Swedes now consider physical money an anachronism.

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TAGS: cash, cash transactions, Sweden, Swedish currency

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