Chinese local media outlets report that approximately a fifth of the country’s population, some 261 million people, have set up wallets for the country’s central bank digital currency (CBDC), the digital renminbi (RMB). The information was revealed at a press conference held by the State Council Information Office on Jan 18. The reports also mentioned that it had crossed transaction volumes of 87.5 billion, following several successful pilots in major cities.
CBDC is expected to be used in the 2022 Winter Olympics.
Chinese CBDC pilots were held in Shenzhen, Suzhou, Xiong’an, Chengdu, Shanghai, Hainan, Changsha, Xi’an, Qingdao, and Dalian. These pilots have been launched in preparation for the CBDC’s use in the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing. The success of the pilots, gauged by the transaction volume and number of e-wallets, has led to the planning of more pilots and research. The plan is to further expand the use of digital renminbi in retail transactions, living payments, and government services. It also wishes to draw more enterprises into the use of the asset.
China is rapidly developing and launching pilots for its digital currency.
China is rapidly developing and launching pilots for its national digital currency and is ahead of many other countries. It is by no means the only country to have a CBDC — as others have already launched it — but it is certainly the largest economy so far. China is well known for being a country that is focused on digitizing its economy and implementing new technologies. Other countries have realized that they must do the same and have accelerated their efforts. Alongside regulation, CBDCs remains a key point on the agenda of many regulators around the world.