People in Sweden Now at Risk of Losing Access to Notes

Hanna Hoikkala and Amanda Billner – February 27, 2018

People living in the world’s most cashless society may soon lose their access to notes and coins.

To avoid that extreme scenario, Swedish cash-handling provider Loomis AB wants authorities to force banks and retailers to continue accepting cash.

The warning follows similar calls from the Swedish central bank, which is worried that the rapid disappearance of cash will ultimately lead to the disintegration of the infrastructure needed to use notes and coins and undermine its task to promote a safe and efficient payment system.

“We have to have cars, vaults and all that, and in order to maintain the infrastructure we also need a base volume,” Loomis Chief Executive Officer Patrik Andersson said in an interview.

He says Sweden’s more remotely populated areas in the north are most at risk of losing access to cash. Such a scenario would be worrying in the event of natural disaster or a technological breakdown, with Swedes potentially unable to buy the basics needed to survive.