Digital Yuan: no large-scale launch in 2021?
Although the Chinese digital yuan is already being tested locally, the government does not intend to rush its launch. At least that is what emerged from a recent full-scale test.
According to the Chinese media Global Times, the digital yuan was offered at an event in Suzhou, a city in Jiangsu province. This was the venue that had been by the Bitcoin Machine app selected for a massive airdrop of the digital yuan to test it in real conditions. Consumers were invited to spend their digital currency on the occasion of the „Double 12“, the equivalent of Black Friday.
E-commerce giant JD.com authorised payments in digital yuan on its services. And the test was conclusive: 20,000 transactions were carried out in 24 hours, the first 2 seconds only after the launch. 80% of the transactions were made by people born after 1980. The largest amount transferred was 10,000 yuan.
Huawei reveals a smartphone with a wallet for the digital yuan
The digital yuan is unlikely to come out in 2021.
But despite the success of this test phase, and others that have taken place in China, the government does not wish to rush the launch of its digital currency. According to Cao Yin, the director of the Digital Renaissance Foundation, Beijing could even give itself more than a year:
„In 2021, China will continue to find new scenarios to test the digital yuan, but a full launch is still unlikely. »
While there is a strong temptation to launch a digital central bank currency quickly, in order to compete with other economies of scale, the game is not worth the candle, according to Cao Yin. China is indeed aware that once launched, the digital yuan will be unstoppable, which is why the government wants to test it so strictly:
Focus on the 2022 Winter Olympics ?
The first large-scale distribution of digital currency could therefore take place during the 2022 Winter Olympics, when the eyes of the world will be turned towards China. However, Cao Yin does not see a global release until at least 2023. With other major economies still in their infancy in terms of central bank digital currencies, the Chinese government can indeed consolidate its lead, even if it means accelerating the movement if the need arises at some point.