Blockchain & Crypto

Digital Yuan Now Available as a Payment Option in Qingdao Metro

China’s digital yuan central bank digital currency (CBDC) can be used for fare payments even if the passenger’s mobile phone has no signal or is out of battery

Digital Yuan Now Available as a Payment Option in Qingdao Metro

Qingdao Metro has introduced China’s first offline CBDC pilot. It allows passengers of the metro’s line 4 to use their NFC mobile phone for direct fare payments with China’s digital yuan, as reported by China’s Securities Times.

The payment technology may function, even if a user’s mobile phone has no signal, is turned off or has run out of battery. The mobile phone’s NFC function enables the payment completion in all cases. Besides, the function of balance sharing of the personal soft wallet works without additional recharge.

To use the new service, customers should link China Unicom or China Telecom SIM card digital RMB hard wallet to the Digital RMB App, as well as to the Bank of China personal digital RMB soft wallet.

The offline CBDC payment app has been developed under the guidance of the Digital Currency Research Institute of the People’s Bank of China, the Qingdao Central Branch of the People’s Bank of China and the Qingdao Municipal Transportation Bureau, with the strong support of Qingdao Metro Group.

The offline CBDC pilot project is jointly funded by Bank of China, China Telecom, China Unicom and Digital Finance Public Service Co.

Since the introduction of the digital yuan concept and a dedicated contactless payments app, Chinese authorities have been actively pushing its adoption through various initiatives and cooperation with major local industry players.

Thus, in March 2023, China’s major social networking and payment app WeChat has followed Alipay in adding support for payments using the national CBDC. Earlier, China’s CBDC Wallet introduced “Red Packets” gifts.

While digital currency issued and controlled by the central bank is getting more popular in China, survey showed that Americans are sceptic about CBDC.

Nina Bobro

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Nina is passionate about financial technologies and environmental issues, reporting on the industry news and the most exciting projects that build their offerings around the intersection of fintech and sustainability.