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China’s ride-sharing giant Didi to trial central bank digital currency

China's ride-sharing giant Didi Chuxing is set to trial the country's central bank digital currency (CBDC).
Announcing the news on Wednesday, Didi said it had signed an agreement with the People's Bank of China's (PBOC's) Digital Currency Research Institute to test digital yuan, officially known as Digital Currency Electronic Payment (DCEP).
"DCEP will become a key infrastructure of the digital economy," said Didi, adding that it will work with the central bank to "promote the integration of the digital economy with the real economy."
While specific details of the trial are not yet clear, it could be one of the first real-world applications of DCEP given Didi's massive user base. SoftBank and Apple-backed Didi serves over 550 million users. Didi acquired Uber's China business in 2016.
Notably, Didi already supports Alipay and WeChat Pay on its platform, and the digital currency appears to be a good trial addition.
The PBOC began testing digital currency, which has been under development since 2014, a few months ago. The central bank had partnered with seven state-owned companies, including four commercial banks and three telecom giants, to test the digital yuan.
Restaurant giants Starbucks, McDonald's, and Subway were also reportedly looking to trial the digital currency. While several details of the digital yuan have emerged in recent months, its official launch date still remains unknown. © 2020 The Block Crypto, Inc. All Rights Reserved. This article is provided for informational purposes only. It is not offered or intended to be used as legal, tax, investment, financial, or other advice.

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