Chinese city of Jinan accepts CBDC payments for bus rides

Jinan, the capital of eastern China’s Shandong Province, has begun encouraging the adoption of the country’s central bank digital currency (CBDC) program by introducing the acceptance of digital yuan payments across all its bus routes. 

In its pilot phase, the city tested the introduction of CBDC payments on two bus lines namely B52 and BRT5. Following this trial period, the city has announced that it has now implemented the new payment method to its entire bus network.

Local media outlet Shunwang-Jinan Daily recently reported that the city of Jinan has updated all its card readers and bus route software to allow passengers to pay using the county’s CBDC.

The city is also incentivizing the use of digital yuan by giving fare discounts to passengers who opt for the CBDC payment method. According to the announcement, each person could get up to two discounted rides per day and a maximum of six discounted rides in a month if they opt to pay with the digital yuan.

The move is part of a broader push to promote the adoption of the digital yuan in various places in China. On April 23, the Chinese city of Changshu announced that it will begin paying civil servant salaries with the digital yuan. The announcement noted that all levels of personnel in public service, public institutions and state-owned units would be paid in the country’s CBDC from May.

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Apart from bus rides and civil servant salaries, the country has also implemented its CBDC for its Belt and Road initiative and cross-border trades. On April 24, a plan to promote the CBDC in cross-border trade was issued in the Chinese city of Xuzhou. The city serves as a departure point for trains carrying goods to Europe.

Meanwhile, French bank BNP Paribas has also recently partnered with the Bank of China (BOC) to promote the use of the digital yuan. On May 5, local media outlet South China Morning Post reported that the partnership would allow BNP Paribas’ corporate clients to connect with BOC’s system, enabling the use of the digital yuan for real-time transactions.

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