Ever since the blockchain technology was introduced, the idea of introducing a central bank digital currency (CDBC) was always on the table. Soon after the introduction of crypto-blockchain technology, some countries started rallying up to the CBDC technology.
Among these countries was China, which could be considered the first-ever country to have adopted the CBDC technology. China reportedly started working on its central bank digital currency back in 2014. Since then, China made several breakthroughs for the development of the digital yuan or e-CNY.
Initially, China had not fast-tracked the development of the digital yuan. However, as the world recognized and need for having digital currencies, the countries started working on the CBDCs. This was the time when the pandemic had hit the entire world and fiat cash was rendered useless by the lockdowns and curfews.
At this point, China expedited is the development of the digital yuan. It was soon revealed by the Chinese Central Bank that it was planning to launch the digital yuan by mid of 2021. However, things did not go as planned and the launch of the digital yuan was moved forward.
It was later decided that the digital yuan would be launched by the beginning of 2022. Then there was another change as the Chinese Government wanted the e-CNY operational before the commencement of the Winter Olympics. Therefore, the Chinese authorities working on testing the digital yuan in provinces, districts, cities, and even places all over China.
Now, China is involved in constantly expanding the jurisdiction and coverage of the digital yuan and is testing it out anywhere possible. Just recently, it was announced that people in China would be able to use digital yuan for transportation purposes.
The reports further reveal that for now, it is the Beijing subway where the facility to test the digital yuan has been introduced. Now people at the Beijing subway would be able to use the digital yuan in order to purchase tickets or subway passes to the trains.
Through the Beijing subway, the passengers gain access to more than 20 subway lines as well as suburban railway stations. The announcement around the pilot testing of the digital yuan at the Beijing subway was made by the central bank of China on June 30, 2021.
However, there is a certain limitation to the digital yuan pilot testing, which is that customers of a particular bank will have access to the e-CNY. The reports reveal that it is the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China whose customers would be able to use the e-CNY for the pilot testing.
The Industrial and Commercial Bank of China is one of the several banks that currently support the People’s Bank of China (China’s central bank) with the digital yuan project.