Cash is a friend of Economic recovery

The world could see truly cashless economies within the next five years, according to some economists’ predictions. A study by used data from World Bank and credit and debit card providers to index the top 15 most cashless economies.

Canada, Hong Kong, and Singapore came in at one, two, and three on the list, being the economies deemed furthest along in their descent towards cashlessness. But trends are occurring asymmetrically around the world and in many countries citizens are still very much attached to cash. The study compared the percentages of the population with credit and debit cards, national contactless payment usage, the range of e-wallet operators available to the public, and the number of ATMs per 100,000 adults.

As with all other areas, the Covid-19 pandemic significantly accelerated digital transformation in the economy. In terms of payments trends, this has impacted the amount that digital payments are being used.

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The cashless society from an ethical point of view

The debate about the move towards a cashless society has been at the center of the scene for several years, now. Various angles have been taken by economists, politicians, banking institutions and sociologists. Beyond the technicalities of the debate, lies the question of freedom, of inter-citizen solidarity and of governmental responsibility. The debate cannot remain in the hands of financial specialists, it is first and foremost an ethical, political and societal issue.

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