However, there is no power as far away as China. Its early moves could signal where the rest of the world is going with cryptocurrencies.
“This is not just money,” said Yaya Fanusie, a fellow at the Center for Economic and Financial Strength, an advisory organization and author of a recent article on Chinese currency. “It’s about developing new tools to collect data and leverage that data to make China’s economy smarter and based on real-time information.”
While the Chinese government has not said when and officially introduced the eCNY nationwide, some officials have mentioned that it is ready for tourists to visit the 2022 Olympics in Beijing. Recent articles and speeches by officials at the People’s Bank of China, the country’s central bank, highlight the project’s ambition and desire to be the first.
“The right to issue and control digital currency will become a ‘new battlefield’ of competition among sovereign states,” an article in China Finance, the central bank’s magazine, in November 9, read. “China has many advantages and opportunities in issuing fiat digital currency, so they should speed up to seize the first leg.”
The People’s Bank of China did not respond to a request for comment.
The development of a national digital currency began in 2014, when the People’s Bank of China formed an internal team to work together, soon after Bitcoin gained attention in the country. In 2016, the central bank created a division called the Digital Monetary Institute. Last year, it began testing eCNY in the cities of Shenzhen, Suzhou, Xiongan and Chengdu, according to research from financial investment firm Sino Global Capital.
Those invited to the trial through a WeChat lottery or other apps can click on the link and receive a balance of 200 yuan electronically, which is sometimes displayed in the banking app. image of an ancient Chinese banknote with Mao’s picture on it. The face of Zedong. To spend money, users can use the eCNY app to scan a retailer’s QR code or generate a QR code that the retailer can scan.
Officials from the People’s Bank of China say the eCNY’s design only borrows some minor technical elements from Bitcoin and does not use the so-called blockchain technology, a ledger-like system, but most the cryptocurrencies are based on, officials from the People’s Bank of China said.