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Digital Yuan (e-CNY), the Chinese soverign national digital currency is now being used as a settlement tool for insurance policies. Insurance giant Ping An Property & Casualty Shenzhen Branch teamed up with Bank of China Shenzhen to issue the first even digital yuan settled insurance policy. The policy is exclusively available for the medical staff in Shenzhen’s Nanshan District, reported a local daily.
The policyholders can use e-CNY to pay their policy premium online. The policy covers 300,000 e-CNY ($46,342) for death due to COVID-19, 50,000 e-CNY ($7,723) for COVID related diagnosis and 50,000 for accidental deaths. The latest insurance pilot program extends digital yuan’s use in the financial services sector. The Chinese digital currency is being tested for merchant payments, travel payments, government payments, and much more.
China is at the forefront of the CBDC race having started development in 2014 and currently going through a widespread testing phase. Digital Yuan’s pilot run began in 2019 last quarter with its use as a travel subsidy for government employees and since then it has expanded to various provinces and numerous sectors.
China on the Verge of Digital Yuan Launch
A number of governments around the world are simultaneously working towards launching a digital version of their native fiat, but all are years behind China. Chinese CBDC is on the verge of a widespread launch, having completed two years of pilot programs involving millions of citizens. The official launch has been speculated for nearly two years now, but the recent launch of the white paper by the People’s Bank of China highlighting technical and future goals of e-CNY indicates that the central bank might be planning an official launch.
The white paper revealed e-CNY would work on a two-tier system that is banks would act as the base tier while the end-users phones would be the second tier. The white paper made no mention of blockchain which suggests it would be a centralized network as expected but would make use of smart contracts. There have been calls for a ban on the use of e-CNY in the upcoming Beijing Olympics next year by US politicians.