The Corrency Local Economic Recovery System combines the benefits of local currency, discount vouchers and economic theories to accelerate demand. This versatile tool has worked with three different municipalities around the Czech Republic.
Corrency brings a major structural change in the delivery of financial support. Support flows directly to citizens, who spend the money as they see fit at registered merchants and service providers. An important factor of Corrency is the co-payment of the aid recipient. With every Corrent donated, citizens inject their own resources into the economy, triggering a multiplier effect in the economy. The system was tested in the city of Kyjov, then in the Prague 1 and Prague 18 municipalities. The total amount of support from local governments to small entrepreneurs and tradesmen reached CZK 4.5 million. The project involved over 4 thousand citizens who carried out more than 10 thousand transactions with 213 traders.
How does it actually work? Corrency is a digital transaction system for efficient and transparent use of finances. It greatly simplifies the distribution of targeted funds from the state or municipality to those who currently and genuinely need them. Corrent is an accounting unit worth 1 Czech crown. Such a unit can be issued to its citizens by the local council, the state or a private company. The citizen can then use it to pay for part of his or her spending in one of the local shops or establishments. This will directly support the local economy.
One of the beneficiaries was the Masna Kozí (Butcher Kozí) in Old Town, Prague 1. In addition to the classic meat shop, the shop also has a popular buffet. "In addition to the regular customers who used the project, a lot of new customers came to shop. There were even a few individuals who did not know about us at all or had never been here before and thanks to the Corrents they became our customers. The system was simple and easy to use," said Alena Kubová, the manager of Masna Kozí.
Local governments work with corrent in different ways, for example, directly supporting the activities of their citizens to improve their lifestyle and health. "Our intention is to provide simple and targeted support to the citizens of Letňany and local entrepreneurs. In particular, with this project, we are trying to help sports or leisure clubs operating in the territory of Prague 18 and to promote a healthy lifestyle in people. In addition, we managed to obtain a subsidy of CZK 50,000 from a grant competition, which covers almost the entire operating costs," says Zdeněk Kučera, Mayor of Prague 18, of the positive impact of the cooperation with Corrency.
In all cases, the system served primarily as a tool to support the local economy. Citizens could use the system, for example, to pay at restaurants, but it could also be used by hairdressers or sports operators. According to Petr Stuchlík from CorCo Systems, the company that operates Corrency, the pilot system has proved its worth and there are plans to expand it to other municipalities across the Czech Republic in the future.
– Týdeník Euro