Encointer aims to provide every human with a digital proof of personhood and a basic income in a local cryptocurrency. This means that every participant can maintain exactly one digital identity and that every participant gets a fixed amount of cryptocurrency per month. In contrast to other known cryptocurrencies, encointer issues local currencies, meaning that their issuance is locally bound. The currency of Benin can have a different exchange rate than that of Norway.
Encointer currencies feature nominal demurrage: All balances get devalued over time. 10 units you own today turn into 5 units within one year. Think of this devaluation like a payment to a solidarity fund that pays for the UBI. This way, Encointer can issue monthly UBI and still maintain stable money supply. Demurrage increases money velocity, which in turn fuels the local economy.
Privacy is a major focus of Encointer. The protocol leverages trusted execution environments (TEEs) to enhance the privacy of its users and also increase scalability by delegating transactions off-chain into TEEs. We use SubstraTEE for this, another Polkaproject developed by our team.