Hong Kong Officially Launches Digital Yuan Payments Pilot


Hong Kong launched a pilot program enabling digital yuan payments through major Chinese banks, the first example of China’s currency project being deployed beyond the mainland.

Residents of the city can now open digital yuan wallets with Bank of China, Bank of Communications, China Construction Bank and Industrial and Commercial Bank of China to pay merchants in mainland China directly, Hong Kong’s de facto central bank said in a statement on Friday.

The wallets can be set up using only a Hong Kong mobile phone number and can be used within the Greater Bay Area as well as other pilot regions. Users can top-up the wallets using the local instant payment system known as FPS.

“We will continue to work closely with the People’s Bank of China to gradually expand the application of e-CNY, enrich the range of functionalities” and promote the acceptance of the digital yuan by more retail merchants in both Hong Kong and China, said Eddie Yue, chief executive of the Hong Kong Monetary Authority in a statement. Hong Kong is the first place outside of mainland China in which residents can set up e-CNY wallets, according to the HKMA.