Shenzhen's latest $3m digital yuan test sees nearly 140k transactions

Residents in Shenzhen have proceeded nearly 140,000 transactions in digital yuan during a 10-day city-wide test of China's central bank digital currency, known as DC/EP.

The city of Shenzhen conducted a second run of the digital yuan test starting from January 7 by giving away $3 million worth-of digital yuan to 100,000 local citizens via a lottery. According to a WeChat post from the local government on Monday, more than 1.8 million signed up for the 100,000 tickets.

As of January 17, 95,628 lottery-winners have activated their digital yuan wallets and made 139,794 transactions during the test period with a total spending of 18.22 million yuan, or $2.8 million.

In addition, the post said some of the participants topped up their DC/EP wallets by a total of 1.51 million yuan, or some $232,000.


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The post said although the unspent free digital yuan will be voided after the test concludes on January 17, participants' digital yuan wallets will remain functional. Users who wish to top up their DC/EP wallets via their bank accounts can still spend digital yuan in more than 10,000 local stores that support the DC/EP payment method.

China kicked off its first city-wide digital yuan test via a lottery in Shenzhen in last October, with over 47,000 participants spending $1.3 million via 62,000 transactions.

It was followed by the city of Suzhou on a much larger scale and the latest test returned to Shenzhen. Meanwhile, a Shanghai hospital recently tested card-based digital yuan hardware wallets.

Also, in Shanghai, Alibaba's payment affiliate Ant Financial quietly conducted a digital yuan test via its AliPay app, which was the first known instance where the DC/EP was experimented in a wallet developed by non-state-owned entities.

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Wolfie joined The Block’s news team in 2020 and switched to the research side in 2021 to focu