The cryptocurrency space could help bring out its rivals after a spokesman for the People’s Bank of China said the recent rise of bitcoin (BTC) has sparked new interest in the national digital yuan project.
The digital yuan is the digital currency of the Chinese central bank, and like all CBDs, its underlying principles are completely opposite to those in the cryptocurrency space.
The fundamental cryptographic concepts of decentralization and autonomy are abandoned in favor of centralization and surveillance, to make it easier for government agencies to control the flow of money. The digital yuan is also expected to play a central role in China’s urban ambitions, which aim to make entire cities cashless in the coming years.
But the PBoC believes the very high interest in the digital yuan is a result of bitcoin’s recent rise to new all-time highs, even though the cryptocurrency is still banned in China.
PBoC research director Wang Xin said interest in the digital yuan was partly spurred by other countries’ ambitions to follow suit, and by the rising price of bitcoin. According to a Mandarin translation of his comments to CNBC, Xin said:
This is partly due to the fact that more and more central banks around the world are getting involved in the development of national digital currencies. On the other hand, this percentage increase could also be the result of a sharp rise in the price of bitcoin.
In recent years, China has conducted numerous pilot projects with the digital yuan. Experiments have expanded to include biometric hardware wallets, street vending machines, national lottery draws, etc.
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