icon bookmark-bicon bookmarkicon cameraicon checkicon chevron downicon chevron lefticon chevron righticon chevron upicon closeicon v-compressicon downloadicon editicon v-expandicon fbicon fileicon filtericon flag ruicon full chevron downicon full chevron lefticon full chevron righticon full chevron upicon gpicon insicon mailicon moveicon-musicicon mutedicon nomutedicon okicon v-pauseicon v-playicon searchicon shareicon sign inicon sign upicon stepbackicon stepforicon swipe downicon tagicon tagsicon tgicon trashicon twicon vkicon yticon wticon fm
13 Aug, 2019 11:53

Bitcoin beware? After banning all cryptocurrencies China ‘close’ to releasing its own digital coin

Bitcoin beware? After banning all cryptocurrencies China ‘close’ to releasing its own digital coin

The People’s Bank of China (PBOC) is “close” to issuing its own digital currency, a senior official has said. The news follows a crackdown by authorities on cryptocurrency trading with some 100 exchanges closed since 2017.

China’s own cryptocurrency is “close to being out,” deputy director of the PBOC’s payments department Mu Changchun said at the China Finance 40 Forum, as cited by Bloomberg. He revealed that the bank’s researchers have been at work on the Chinese state digital currency for over a year now, but did not specify its scheduled release date.

The introduction of the PBOC digital currency is aimed at asserting state control of cryptocurrency circulation, according to the official. It will comply with China’s regulations on fraud and money laundering, and will be based on a “two-tier” system, with the central bank partnering up with some other Chinese financial institutions to oversee its supply.

Also on rt.com ‘One boss – US dollar’? China & India put future of Facebook’s Libra cryptocurrency into question

Mu also noted that the digital currency would not solely be based on blockchain technology, citing fears that it might not be able to process the transaction volume necessary for China.

The PBOC stated earlier in August that it plans to “expedite the research of China’s legal digital tender” and monitor the trends of virtual currency development both abroad and at home. The Chinese central bank reportedly sped up the development of its digital currency after Facebook announced plans to launch a global digital coin, Libra.

Facebook’s digital coin has been widely criticized since it was announced, with authorities in the UK, the US, and Russia expressing concern that Libra could create risks for the global financial system due to uncontrolled capital flows.

Also on rt.com Russia, China, Iran & Venezuela developing crypto to challenge US financial control – study

China was one of the first countries to impose restrictions on cryptocurrencies. Back in 2013, financial institutions were banned from transactions with them. In 2014, banks and payment systems had to stop servicing accounts for trading in cryptocurrency. In 2017 the government ordered all local crypto exchanges to stop their operations. Initial coin offerings, or ICOs, were also banned. Following this, almost 100 cryptocurrency exchanges were closed.

China won’t be the first nation to launch a cryptocurrency. Last year, Venezuela launched Petro, aiming to get around US sanctions. However, Petro coins have not entered into wider circulation to date.

For more stories on economy & finance visit RT's business section