According to multiple sources, on Tuesday, China officially began the rollout of the next round of the central bank’s digital currency (CBDC) pilot program.
In Guanzhou city, it is now possible to pay for public buses in CBDC digital yuan (e-CNY) on 10 transit routes, which is the first for the country. To do so, passengers simply download the e-CNY app, send money, and scan the QR code located in the bus payment section to pay for their ride.
Similarly, a day earlier, the city of Ningbo said passengers can now pay for subway rides at 125 stations using e-CNY. Ningbo is the ninth city in China to implement e-CNY testing in subway lines, where passengers can simply scan and pay for the journey.
The Chinese government has rapidly expanded the utility of e-CNY this year. Just last week, the utility was only able to pay contributions to the employee housing fund in Guangzhou city with CBDC. To revive consumer spending in the face of strict coronavirus controls, the government has partnered with food delivery unit Meituan and e-commerce platform JD.com to create e-CNY discounts.