Euro stablecoin launched in Finland, claims to be first approved in the EU

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Finnish com­pa­ny Mem­brane Finance has released a ful­ly-reserved sta­ble­coin backed by the euro, accord­ing to a Feb. 2 blog post from the com­pa­ny. The com­pa­ny is licensed by the Finnish Finan­cial Super­vi­so­ry Author­i­ty (Fin-FSA) and claims that the new ”EUROe” coin is “the first and only EU-reg­u­lat­ed cryp­to stablecoin.”

U.S.-based Cir­cle Inc. released its own euro-backed sta­ble­coin in June, but its Euro Coin (EUROC) was ini­tial­ly cus­todied by Sil­ver­gate Bank, a U.S.-regulated entity.

Each EUROe token is backed by “at least one fiat Euro […] In a Euro­pean finan­cial insti­tu­tion or bank, ring-fenced from Mem­brane Finance,” accord­ing to the company’s post. The com­pa­ny believes it will allow for “near-instant pay­ments” at close to zero cost, in con­trast to the high cost and slow speeds of tra­di­tion­al finance.

Mem­brane Finance CEO Juha Viita­la expressed hope that the reg­u­lat­ed EUROe coin would encour­age more Euro­peans to grow their wealth through the use of decen­tral­ized finance (DeFi) appli­ca­tions, stating:

“Sta­ble­coins are an essen­tial part of the tran­si­tion towards blockchain-based mon­ey infra­struc­ture, and Euro­peans deserve to have a full-reserve euro sta­ble­coin from the EU and reg­u­lat­ed by an EU-based finan­cial author­i­ty. EUROe hope­ful­ly brings more reg­u­lar peo­ple to DeFi, who were pre­vi­ous­ly unable to or wor­ried about the volatil­i­ty of cryptocurrencies.”

Relat­ed: UK-native sta­ble­coin inte­grates into 18,000 ATMs nationwide

The EUROe will ini­tial­ly be avail­able on Ethereum, with sup­port for addi­tion­al blockchain net­works planned for the future.

“Sta­ble­coins,” or cryp­to tokens backed by fiat cur­ren­cy, have had a long and illus­tri­ous his­to­ry in the cryp­to world. The first U.S. dol­lar sta­ble­coin, Teth­er (USDT), was ini­tial­ly released for the Bit­coin Omni Lay­er, with an Ethereum ver­sion arriv­ing in 2018. It is now the third-largest cryp­tocur­ren­cy by mar­ket cap­i­tal­iza­tion, accord­ing to CoinMarketCap.

On Jan. 19, Cir­cle and the team behind Uniswap decen­tral­ized exchange released a report claim­ing that blockchain-based for­eign exchange can reduce remit­tance costs by as much as 80%.

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