China’s central bank governor Yi Gang says $250 billion were transferred via digital yuan since its pilot start 18 months ago.
The conference held in Singapore on July 19 shed light on the progress of the country’s central bank digital currency (CBDC), which has seen transactions totaling 1.8 trillion yuan by the end of June.
The digital yuan’s rollout began in January 2022. It has garnered significant interest, with approximately 120 million wallets used for roughly 950 million transactions. On average, each transaction amounts to about $260.
Despite the enormous transaction volume, the digital yuan’s adoption remains relatively low compared to China’s massive population of 1.4 billion people. Primarily, it has been utilized for domestic retail payments, though a few trials have been conducted in Hong Kong.
To encourage cross-border applications of the digital yuan, the Bank of China Hong Kong recently initiated a trial for its customers at select retail stores in the region. This marks the third cross-border trial for the central bank digital currency (CBDC) in Hong Kong.
Another notable trial conducted by the Bank of China Hong Kong involved encouraging customers to set up a BOC e-CNY wallet to receive a bonus of $14 (100 yuan) for use at the Hong Kong supermarket chain U Select.
The Chinese government is also pushing to pay wages to public sector employees using the digital yuan. Major payment platforms like Alipay and WeChat have integrated the CBDC, offering faster and more convenient payment options.
According to reports, the total circulation of the digital yuan by the end of June amounted to $2.3 billion.