Fabio Panetta: Europe as a common shield - protecting the euro area economy from global shocks

Keynote speech by Mr Fabio Panetta, Member of the Executive Board of the European Central Bank, at the European Parliament's Innovation Day "The EU in the world created by the Ukraine war", Brussels, 1 July 2022. 

The views expressed in this speech are those of the speaker and not the view of the BIS.

Central bank speech  | 
05 July 2022

I am very pleased to be taking part in this event, even though I unfortunately cannot do so in person. I would like to thank European Parliament Secretary-General Klaus Welle for his kind invitation.

As an EU institution, the ECB is accountable to the citizens of Europe via the European Parliament. And our two institutions have quickly learnt one of the key lessons of the COVID-19 crisis: physical distance need not imply intellectual distance.

Thanks to technology, since the outbreak of the pandemic I have participated in several virtual hearings of the Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs to discuss the ECB's work on a digital euro. The digital euro is a key innovation for serving the interests of Europeans in a digital world. It would provide easy, costless and safe access to central bank money for daily digital payments, just as cash does for physical transactions today.

Co-legislators can ensure that the European Union supports modernisation and progress in a way that is fully aligned with European values and interests. For the digital euro, they will legislate on key aspects such as the protection of privacy and legal tender status.