The China Construction Bank (CCB), one of China’s 4 largest banks, quietly launched a digital wallet for China’s central bank digital currency on 29 August 2020. CCB, however, quickly disabled it when the wallet began to receive wide scale attention.
It is believed that, for a brief period, users were able to find the app by searching “digital currency”. Once downloaded, users were able to further activate their digital currency wallets, by registering with a mobile phone number associated with their bank accounts at CCB.
It is unclear when CCB opened up the feature and whether it was done intentionally, but news of the wallet managed to spread incredibly quickly among the Chinese crypto community. The banking giant, however, quickly disabled the feature in a matter of hours after it was apparently launched.
This is substantial proof that the CCB has been working towards the anticipated adoption of the digital yuan. It is expected that the digital yuan will replace China’s paper RMB currency variants, and will go head to head with the US dollar and cryptocurrencies. The digital yuan is expected to be pegged 1:1 to the existing RMB.
Currently, pilot projects that trial and test the adoption of the digital yuan are being conducted within several major Chinese cities. The digital yuan design is expected to be finalised by the end of 2020, and further piloting projects are to roll out at the 2022 Winter Olympic Games, to be held in Beijing.