The e-krona pilot phase 4: offline payments with e-krona

News The Riksbank's e-krona pilot is now releasing its fourth and final report, which analyses how an e-krona could work in practice, if a decision is taken to issue a central bank digital currency. In the report, the Riksbank has further investigated how an e-krona can be used offline for payments if electricity and telecommunications are not working. The Riksbank's work on the e-krona will continue and will focus on design and preparations for the legislation that may be needed if an e-krona is introduced.

One of the basic premises of the e-krona pilot has been that the e-krona should serve as a further payment option to contribute to robustness and increased preparedness. In phase 4, the Riksbank has therefore focused on testing and evaluating whether it is possible to design a secure, balance-based offline solution based on the conditions of the e-krona pilot's test environment.

The technical solution reserves e-krona for offline use in a so-called shadow wallet in the online system. The payment instrument in the form of a payment card records the shadow wallet's balance and subsequent offline transactions. The actual e-kronas issued by the Riksbank never leave the online system and only change hands when the payment instruments are synchronised. The solution thus differs from the offline solution tested by the Riksbank in phase 2, which was token-based and instead involved moving copies of the e-krona to the payment instrument.

In the project, the Riksbank has tested transfers to and from payment cards, offline payments to merchants and offline transfers between end-users. To ensure that all offline payments are correctly recorded in the online system, a robust and secure synchronisation mechanism was also developed and tested.

Many lessons can be learnt from phase 4. Most importantly, a secure and functional offline solution requires a lot of development work on technology, regulations and processes.


The Riksbank initiated a pilot project in 2020 to develop a proposal for a technical solution for a central bank digital currency, an e-krona, that could work as a complement to cash.

The aim of the pilot project has been to show in a test environment how an e-krona could look, work and be used by the general public. Its purpose has been for the Riksbank to increase its knowledge of a central bank-issued digital krona. There is currently no decision on issuing an e-krona, how an e-krona might be designed or what technology might be used.

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Updated 20/03/2024