China has long been expected to become the first nation to launch a Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC). Periodically, reports have popped up regarding the development of the digital currency and today we have another glimmer on the progress driven by the People’s Bank of China.
According to a report in SCMP that was originally sourced from Sina, China’s digital currency will enlist the assistance of several, well-known US brands including Starbucks, McDonald’s, and more. These big brands will be joined by hotels and other small stores in the “new” city Xiong’an as a test market south of Beijing.
Several other cities are in the test queue including Shenzhen, Suzhou, and Chengdu with future locations added going forward.
While no official launch date has been announced, it appears the CBDC will soon be live and in the wild.
The “DCEP” as it is officially called will be similar to other services that provide transfers and payments. It has been previously reported that the digital currency will use some elements of blockchain, or distributed ledger technology, but it will not be entirely based on the tech due to concerns about the ability to be robust enough to handle many simultaneous transactions.
Long ago, China banned cryptocurrency trading and the issuance of crypto but a vibrant OTC market is said to have arisen. China is also well-known for its cryptocurrency mining operations.
In China, blockchain has been deemed as strategically important with a CBDC as a single aspect of the ongoing development of the new technology.