Bank of China President Yi Gang
Bank of China President Yi Gang addressing the risks brewing in China's banking sector. Financial Times

The People’s Bank of China (PBoC), the country’s central bank, is “progressing smoothly” with the development of its own government-backed digital currency, the bank reported on 5 January.

The statement on its progress with the digital yuan was made during the PBoC’s annual work conference, held in Beijing between 2-3 January. The conference had the goal of “studying and implementing the spirit” of the Fourth Plenary Session of the 19th Central Committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC), which was held in October 2019.

The bank further stated that it will “continue to steadily advance the development of legal digital currencies” in 2020. The Chinese Communist Party Secretary Guo Shuqing and the PBoC President Yi Gang also held speeches during the conference, which summarized the PBoC’s work in 2019, and outlined the bank’s tasks for 2020.

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Devoting five years of research and development, China finally proceeded with conducting real-world trials of its Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) in December 2019. As reported, the country’s central bank is “expected” to start the tests of its digital yuan in Shenzhen and Suzhou.

The PBoC is also said to have partnered with seven state owned commercial banks and telecoms in order to conduct the test. Participating will be the country’s four big banks, including the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, Bank of China, China Construction Bank and the Agricultural Bank of China, as well as China Telecom, China Mobile, and China Unicorn.

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