Chinese financial regulators to establish legal standards for digital currency
Published: Feb 08, 2022 10:52 PM
A view of the PBC's headquarters in Beijing Photo: cnsphoto

A view of the PBC's headquarters in Beijing Photo: cnsphoto

Four Chinese financial departments and regulatory agencies have vowed to steadily promote the establishment and development of legal standards for a digital currency, according to a statement from the country's central bank on Tuesday. 

The People's Bank of China (PBC), the State Administration for Market Regulation, the China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission, and China Securities Regulatory Commission jointly issued a development plan targeting standardizing the finance sector during the 14th Five-Year Plan period (2021-25). 

The plan places a strong focus on legalizing the digital currency, aiming to come up with legal standards for the issuance, technology, security and other processes involved in the transactions of the digital currency, while establishing and regulating the testing indexes of related systems and products. 

Analysts stressed the importance and necessity of establishing centralized standards to manage the digital currency and maintain the sound development of the industry, especially with the wide use and promotion of the digital yuan in many areas, including at the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics.  

Some people have been engaging in unlawful activities under the guise of using digital currencies to obtain illegal profits in the past, which have disrupted the normal market order, Liu Dingding, a Beijing-based independent analyst, told the Global Times on Tuesday.

Liu added that the sector can achieve sound and orderly development if it is managed by the national-level financial supervision and decision-making authorities. 

The digital yuan has been widely tested in many places across the country. During the ongoing Beijing Winter Olympics, consumers can use a wide range of digital yuan products and enjoy the convenience of mobile payments within the country. 

Merchants, contracted hotels and designated hospitals within the restricted areas in competition venues all support the use of the digital yuan, while people can also use this method of payment with merchants outside the restricted areas with signs showing the digital yuan, the Shanghai Securities News reported.  

Liu said that the broad use and application scenarios of the digital yuan are based on previously implemented standards and trials. 

He also noted that establishing standards will boost the efficient development of the industry, which has focused more on speed rather than standardized development in the past. As a result, the industry's development has encountered obstacles due to a lack of proper guidance.  

The development plan sets the goal that a standardized financial system will be basically completed by 2025 that will integrate financial supervision, markets and services, while the country's financial industry will develop with high quality, supported by a high level of standardization. 

Global Times