The second digital yuan test involving the public started in Suzhou, and TechNode nabbed some of the coveted digital currency. A former central bank governor said that China isn’t looking to challenge other currencies with its digital money. Two local governments made steps in blockchain adoption: Xiong’an launched a city-level blockchain operating system and Shenzhen released standards for blockchain in finance. In Sichuan province, authorities cut off electricity to miners.

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The world of blockchain moves fast, and nowhere does it move faster than China. Here’s what you need to know about China’s block-world in the week of Dec. 8-15.

The digital yuan wallet. (Image credit: TechNode/Shi Jiayi)

The digital yuan

  • A second public trial for the digital yuan kicked off in Suzhou, a city in eastern China. A total of RMB 20 million ($3 million) was dispersed in red envelopes containing RMB 200 each to 100,000 lucky lottery winners.
  • The digital yuan wallet can connect to one of five different bank cards. Each gives users the option to use the digital currency on different e-commerce platforms; e-commerce site JD.com, ride-hailing platform Didi, video-streaming site Bilibili, and services app Meituan.
  • The wallet also has an option to pay Party membership fees.
  • Lottery winners can use the money by Dec. 27.
  • JD.com processed 20,000 orders using the digital yuan on Saturday, the day of its Dec. 12 “Double 12” shopping promotion. (South China Morning Post)

READ MORE: EXCLUSIVE: We got some digital yuan!

  • China doesn’t aim to replace existing fiat currencies used in global trade with the digital yuan, Zhou Xiaochuan, the former governor of the People’s Bank of China and a towering figure in Chinese finance, said on Monday.
  • Nonetheless, the digital currency might transform international trade because it can handle cross-border transactions simultaneously and in real time, he said. (South China Morning Post)

Some countries are worried about the internationalization of the yuan. We can’t push them on sensitive issues and we can’t impose our will. We must avoid the perception of great power chauvinism.

Zhou Xiaochuan, former governor of the PBOC, as translated by the SCMP

The local governments

  • The city of Xiong’an in northern Hebei province launched China’s first city-level blockchain operating system. It is a multi-layer chain that handles both the base architecture and applications built on top of it. (Xiong’an People’s Daily, in Chinese)
  • Shenzhen in southern Guangdong province released a local standard for blockchain in finance. The Shenzhen Stock Exchange and Tencent’s WeBank were involved in drafting the standard. The new standard focuses on identity authentication, permissions management, and support for anti-money laundering, anti-fraud, and regulatory audits. (Fintech Micro Insights, in Chinese)

The bad Bitcoin news

  • Sichuan authorities cut off electricity to cryptocurrency mines starting on Dec. 8. The southwestern province’s abundance of cheap power from its hydroelectric plants has made it home to many miners. But this electricity is scarce in winter, so authorities wanted to prioritize other industries. (Wu Blockchain Twitter)

READ MORE: INSIGHTS | Markets, not floods, will drown bitcoin miners

  • A man in Dalian killed his daughter and together with his wife attempted suicide after losing RMB 20 million by trading in cryptocurrencies, some of which he had borrowed from his wife and parents. The man survived, but his wife and daughter did not. (Wu Blockchain)

Eliza Gkritsi

Eliza was TechNode's blockchain and fintech reporter until July 2021, when she moved to CoinDesk to cover crypto in Asia. Get in touch with her via email or Twitter.