Plans to create the world’s first digital currency issued by a central bank have been revealed by the Ecuadorean government.
Central bank officials say the electronic money, as yet unnamed, will start circulating in December.
The new electronic money will be used alongside the existing currency in Ecuador, the US dollar.
President Rafael Correa has said the digital currency will help those who cannot afford traditional banking by making payments using mobile technology.
Central bank officials say the electronic money will be used to pay government bureaucrats in a “hygienic manner”.
The US dollar was introduced in Ecuador in 2000 after the bank crisis.