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Jinan, the capital of east China’s Shandong Province, has begun encouraging the country’s central bank digital currency (CBDC) program by accepting digital yuan payments on all of its bus routes.
In a pilot phase, the city tested the introduction of CBDC payments on two bus lines, namely the B52 and BRT5. Following this trial period, the city announced that it has now implemented a new payment method for its entire bus network.
Local media outlet Shunwang-Jinan Daily recently reported that the city of Jinan has upgraded all of its card readers and bus route software so that passengers can pay with the county’s CBDC.
The city is also encouraging the use of the digital yuan by offering discounts to passengers who choose the CBDC payment method. According to the announcement, each person can get up to two discounted rides per day and a maximum of six discounted rides per month if they choose to pay with digital yuan.
The move is part of a broader campaign to promote the digital yuan in various places in China. On April 23, the Chinese city of Changshu announced that it would begin paying civil servants’ salaries using digital yuan. The announcement noted that all levels of civil service personnel, government agencies, and government units will be paid by the country’s CBDC from May.
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In addition to bus travel and civil servant wages, the country has also implemented CBDC for its Belt and Road Initiative and cross-border trade. On April 24, a plan to promote CBDC in cross-border trade was unveiled in the Chinese city of Xuzhou. The city serves as a starting point for trains carrying goods to Europe.
Meanwhile, French bank BNP Paribas also recently partnered with the Bank of China (BOC) to promote the use of the digital yuan. On May 5, the local publication South China Morning Post reported that the partnership will allow BNP Paribas corporate customers to connect to the BOC system, allowing the use of digital yuan for real-time transactions.