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Suzhou Government to Airdrop $3 Million in Digital Yuan for CBDC Trial

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Suzhou Government to Airdrop $3 Million in Digital Yuan for CBDC Trial

The Suzhou government is set to carry out a test on China’s central bank digital currency (CBDC) by conducting a digital yuan airdrop via a lottery program, which will see the distribution of $3 million worth of digital yuan to some lucky winners. 

Suzhou to Test Digital Yuan Via Lottery Program

According to an official release on Friday (Dec. 4, 2020), the Chinese city of Suzhou plans to distribute the country’s digital currency electronic payment (DC/EP) to residents in the city. The airdropped digital yuan will come in the form of red envelopes.

Today’s update follows an earlier report stating that the Suzhou authorities were considering carrying out a digital yuan trial. For the DC/EP airdrop event, the Chinese city plans to give out 20 million yuan ($3 million) in China’s CBDC, with 100,000 lucky winners selected from the draw and given red envelopes containing 200 yuan ($30).

Also, registration for the draw will commence on Dec. 5, and close on Dec. 6, 2020. Furthermore, The Suzhou government is targeting the Double 12 Online shopping festival for winners to spend their free “coins”. Winners will be announced on Dec. 11 and can spend their digital yuan between Dec. 12 and 27th at supported offline stores in the city, and selected online stores on major e-commerce platform JD.com.

Meanwhile, Suzhou authorities will select some of the recipients of the DC/EP airdrop who will trial the digital wallet offline payment feature.

Suzhou’s digital yuan lottery program follows a previous DC/EP airdrop conducted in Shenzhen. Back in October, the Shenzhen government distributed 10 million yuan (~$1.5 million) worth of digital currency to 50,000 lucky winners.

However, some of the winners who received and spent their free digital yuan gave unfavorable reviews. According to the recipients, the CBDC was no different from existing payment options, and was less convenient.

Although there is no official statement about the launch date of the DC/EP, China’s CBDC has undergone testing across different parts of the country. As at October 31, the digital yuan has processed over $300 million in payments from over 4 million transactions.

Meanwhile, Macau’s gambling industry is not enthusiastic about the country’s CBDC. According to casino operators, the use of a traceable digital currency for gambling could further cripple the already struggling industry.

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