One of the largest Chinese e-commerce platforms – JD.com – has reportedly enabled its customers to use the digital yuan for payments during the shopping festival – Singles Day.
JD Embraces The Chinese CBDC
Even though China’s central bank digital currency has not officially rolled out nationwide, the local leading retail company – JD – has reportedly collaborated with China Construction Bank to become the first firm accepting it as a payment method on its platform. Clients can use the digital yuan during the Singles Day promotion period, which started on October 31st and ends today (November 11th).
JD noted that over 100,000 people had employed the CBDC so far. Still, Singles Day is today, meaning that many more customers can join. All it takes for users to take part in the promotion is to type “e-CNY” on JD’s app, and they will receive instructions on how to download China’s CBDC application and can receive 15 yuan ($2.34) to spend.
At the end of last year, the fintech affiliate of the e-commerce giant called JD Digits launched a pilot program enabling clients to purchase specific items with the digital yuan. It issued 100,000 digital cash vouchers worth 20 million yuan to encourage residents of Suzhou city in the eastern province of Jiangsu to engage with the innovative currency.
Singles Day is a Chinese unofficial holiday and shopping season that celebrates people who are not in relationships (the four “1’s” on the date 11.11. abstractly refer to this demographic group of single individuals). Paradoxically, the holiday has become one of the largest physical retail and online shopping day across the globe.
Companies like JD host the festival every year and garner billions of dollars in total sales volume on that day. So far this year, the e-commerce giant has registered $48.6 billion in sales across its platforms during the shopping event, meaning that it beat all its previous records.
140 Million Digital Yuan Wallets so Far
As CryptoPotato reported last week, the number of digital yuan wallets in China has surged to 140 million, 10 million of which are corporate accounts. This number seems impressive since it equals around 10% of the total local population.
Digital yuan transactions have also increased significantly from $5.4 billion four months ago to $9.7 billion as of early November.
Being a relatively new payment transaction method, the e-CNY could also be employed by bad actors. On that note, the Xinmi Police arrested 11 gang members after it cracked down on the nation’s first use of digital yuan in money laundering operations. The criminals have reportedly acted on behalf of an overseas fraud group hiding in Cambodia.
Featured Image Courtesy of RetailInAsia