Home News Over 140M people have digital yuan accounts

Over 140M people have digital yuan accounts

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As of October, about 140 million people opened wallets for the digital yuan and used it for transactions totaling about 62 billion yuan (~$9.7 billion), according to Reuters. The head of the Digital Currency Institute of the People’s Bank of China (PBoC) Mu Changchun released the data at the “Fintech Week” conference in Hong Kong.

The official added that 1.55 million merchants, including utilities, catering, transport, retail and government services, can already accept payments in the asset, known as e-CNY. At the same time, Mu Changchun clarified that the date of the official launch of e-CNY has not yet been determined.

Thus, to activate the base wallet, which has a transaction limit of 50,000 yuan ($7,800) each year, all you need is a phone number. Moreover, users who want to open an e-CNY wallet for unlimited transactions must present personal identification at a bank counter.

e-CNY

PBoC started testing e-CNY in April 2020, with the goal of completely replacing cash payments with the digital yuan. At that time, according to Bank for International Settlements (BIS) specialists; 80% of central banks were studying the possibilities of central bank digital currencies (CBDC). However, according to many experts, China is the most advanced in this process.

In December 2020, six major state-owned banks took part in the testing. Later in August 2021, 35 commercial banks already opened access to the asset to customers.

The Chinese government monitors, tracks, and registers CBDC via smartphone apps.

Bypassing the network

Recall that previously in September, BIS stated that CBDCs can cut cross-border transactions. According to the report on the program “Inthanon-LionRock to mBridge: Building a multi CBDC platform for international payments”; digital currencies allowed making payments in a few seconds. Instead of three to five working days, bypassing the network of correspondent banks.

The prototype of the blockchain platform also demonstrated a possible reduction in the cost of payments by 50%. By reducing the cost of “some of the main components of correspondent banking”.

The initial participants of the pilot were the Hong Kong Monetary Authority and the Bank of Thailand. At the new stage, they were joined by the Digital Currency Institute of PBoC and the UAE Central Bank.

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