PBoC’s digital currency head: China digital yuan hit 62 billion yuan in total transactions processed

According to numbers revealed at Hong Kong Fintech Week, China’s experiments with central bank digital currencies (CBDCs), the digital yuan (DC/EP), show no signs of slowing down because the number of digital yuan accounts reached 140 million. At the same time, businesses created another 10 million accounts.

Over 140 million people have digital yuan (e-CNY) accounts

Designed to replace cash in everyday transactions, the digital yuan is gaining interest among individuals and businesses, according to the People’s Bank of China’s (PBoC) Digital Currency Institute head Mu Changchun. Speaking at Wednesday’s conference, Mu said the number of individual digital yuan accounts reached 140 million, while businesses created another 10 million.

While the official launch date of e-CNY is still unclear, China has continued to expand the test rollout to more than a dozen regions. With a wide range of merchants from utilities, catering, and transportation to retail and government services accepting CBDCs, people spent 62 billion yuan ($9.7 billion) in CNY digital wallets as of October 2021.

“Some 140 million people had opened wallets for China’s new digital yuan as of October and used it for transactions totaling around 62 billion yuan ($9.7 billion)”, Reuters stated.

The PBoC CEO also detailed different types of e-CNY wallets. The base wallet has an annual transaction limit of 50,000 yuan ($7,800), requiring only a phone number for activation. If users want to open an e-CNY wallet for unlimited transactions, they must go to a bank counter with identification.

China is looking to replace cash payments with the e-CNY ultimately, and the country is continuing to experiment widely in major cities as of April 2020. China’s CBDC regulates the Chinese government’s controls, tracks, and registers on smartphone apps.

A year ago, during the same conference, PBoC Governor Yi Gang said the e-CNY pilot had seen people spend 2 billion yuan ($299 million) in 4 million transactions in four cities. Last year’s numbers mean that e-CNY saw a 3,000% increase in trading volume in 12 months thanks to geographically expanded trials and the growing popularity of CBDCs.

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