Bundesbank board member Johannes Beermann is critical of the EU Commission's plans to limit cash payments to EUR 10,000 in the fight against money laundering.
"It is absolutely necessary to intensify the fight against money laundering," said Beermann of the German press agency.
"But it is questionable whether an upper limit of 10,000 euros for cash payments is the most suitable means, or whether it is not primarily aimed at honest citizens."
According to Beermann, it is unlikely that such large sums will be paid in cash, except when buying a car.
“But I am bothered by an upper limit as such.” Beermann fears that this “gives the citizens the impression that cash is more or less disreputable”.
At the same time, the board member responsible for cash at the Bundesbank emphasized: “So far there has been no scientifically sound evidence that the goal of combating money laundering is achieved with upper limits for cash payments.” This has also been shown by experience in countries in which payments with notes and coins have already reached certain amounts are limited.
"I therefore consider an upper limit for cash payments to be wrong," said Beermann.
There is no uniform regulation
According to the European Consumer Center Germany, there are different limits for payments with cash in different EU countries.
In Belgium, for example, a maximum of 3000 euros can be paid in bills and coins, in Portugal it is 1000 euros for transactions between consumers and dealers and in Greece 500 euros, with the exception of car purchases.
The EU Commission wants to present a package of legislative proposals to combat money laundering in the summer.
“We're talking about an upper limit of 10,000 euros.
Carrying so much money around in your pockets is really difficult.
Most people don't do that, ”Finance Commissioner Mairead McGuinness told the Süddeutsche Zeitung at the beginning of May.