According to the Bloomberg report, the People’s Bank of China (PBoC) is planning to test its national digital currency (DCEP) on platforms operated by Meituan Dianping, enlisting the food delivery giant backed by Tencent Holdings Ltd. The country is currently testing its centralized digital currency in four cities and is very close to issuing it to the general public. Meituan has been in talks with a research wing of the PBoC on real-world uses for the national digital currency dubbed Digital Currency Electronic Payment or DCEP, according to people with direct knowledge of the matter.
Ride-hailing startup Didi Chuxing is also testing DCEP.
The food delivery giant Meituan joins ride-hailing startup Didi Chuxing in helping the PBoC test digital yuan, which lives on a mobile wallet application and offers Beijing greater control of the country’s financial system. Like the ride-hailing startup Didi, Meituan hosts billions of dollars in daily transactions in realms from the meal delivery to online travel services. Its participation would drive mass acceptance and widen Beijing’s global lead in central bank-backed digital currencies. The PBoC’s research wing is also in discussions on trials with Bilibili Inc., another Tencent-backed company that streams video, as per the report.
China is all set to become the first major nation to issue a CBDC.
The People’s Bank of China has been working on its national digital currency from the last five to six years and is now very close to issuing it to the general public. Several other central banks around the world are also researching and experimenting with the idea of a CBDC. Earlier, the central bank of Canada had posted for a job for the project manager of CBDC. European countries are also working in this field. The central banks across countries accelerated their research into CBDCs after the social media giant Facebook announced its stablecoin Libra last year.