China’s Commerce Ministry announced today that it will expand the nation’s central bank digital currency DCEP trials to include Beijing and Tianjin and Hebei provinces. According to the Wall Street Journal report, there is not yet a set time when the expanded pilot program of the Chinese CBDC will begin. Still, the nation’s Ministry of Commerce announced that the policy framework should be complete by the end of 2020. The nation’s Ministry of Commerce announced that the policy framework should be complete by the end of this year.
The expanded pilot project will include several cities.
According to the report, the expanded pilot will include the Hong Kong Greater Bay area, which consists of nine cities, including Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Hong Kong, and Macau. An official from the Chinese Ministry of Commerce said that the trials would cover much of the country’s wealthiest regions. Poorer central and western regions that meet unspecified criteria will also join the testing. The People’s Bank of China will lead the pilot. China’s CBDC is known domestically as a digital currency electronic payment (DCEP) and is by many expected to be the first operational national digital currency. Earlier this year, the PBoC tested the digital yuan as part of a transport subsidies scheme for government and enterprise workers in Suzhou.
Central banks continue to explore digital currencies.
Central banks across countries are currently exploring digital currencies in their capacity. China has been working on its national digital currency from five to six years and is now very close to issuing it to the general public. Bank of Japan recently expressed its interest in issuing a national digital. Earlier, a report from the Bank for International Settlements stated that the ongoing global pandemic had exemplified the need for central banks to create CBDCs.