A physical card-wallet pilot program has been launched in a canteen at Shanghai Jiao Tong University School of Medicine’s Tongren Hospital. Staff at the hospital can use the card-wallet to make purchases at the many shops in the hospital. The card shows spending, balance, and the remaining number of offline payments available via a small screen at the top-right corner of the card. In the future, DCEP will be tested in various scenarios such as for hospital diagnosis and treatment payments, physical examinations fees and parking fees.
Bilibili (NASDAQ: BILI), also nicknamed B Site, is a video sharing website based in Shanghai with over 180 million registered users, mostly consisting of the younger generation in China.
Bilibili appears to be preparing to enter the payment business in China, with Shanghai Huandian Information Technology Co., Ltd., an affiliate of B Site, completing the filing of domain names such as "bilibilipay.com" and "bilibilipay.cn". Additionally, recruitment websites indicate that B Site has been filling payment business-related job positions since November last year.
The Monetary Authority of Macau is launching a new product called ‘聚易用Simple Pay’, an integrated mobile payment tool for merchants. Using the product, merchants will be able to use a single terminal to accept all local QR code payment tools, giving customers the choice of using any local QR code payment tool for purchases. Tourists can continue to use overseas wallets to pay with the new tool too.
On December 29th, the Beijing Metro Daxing Airport Line launched a pilot application for the use of DCEP in preparation for the Beijing Winter Olympics. Participants in the pilot are invited to open a digital RMB wallet to use DCEP to buy subway tickets and experience the use of DCEP wearable devices to pass subway gates by "touching" ticket machines. DCEP wallets are provided in different forms such as cards, wearable badges, watches, and wristbands.
On the evening of December 31st, Shenzhen’s major official platforms officially announced the launch of the "Futian Gifted DCEP Red Packet New Year Promotion Campaign.” This is the second round of distributions of DCEP red packets in Shenzhen after 10 million digital yuan (US$1.5 million) was distributed in similar fashion in October. The total value of red packets distributed in this round amounts to RMB 20 million (US$3 million), with each packet valued at RMB 200.
The new product Dragon HKPay QR Code Payment, launched by CCB Asia, provides QR Code payment services through HK’s Faster Payment System (“FPS”) and UnionPay. With the new service, customers can register their CCB UnionPay credit card and then make QR code payments globally as well as take advantage of UnionPay offers and discounts.
The service is supported by the expansion of UnionPay QR code service. Currently, UnionPay cards are accepted in 179 countries and regions around the world, among which 61 countries and regions have opened UnionPay mobile payment services. About 90 UnionPay-standard digital wallets have been launched in 14 countries and regions overseas.
In November this year, ZhongAn Online Property Insurance Co., Ltd. and China Construction Bank launched a cooperation to use China’s DCEP for online insurance issuance.
ZhongAn was China’s first Internet insurance company and, as of October 31, 2020, cumulative premiums exceeded RMB 50 billion (USD 23 billion), ranking ZhongAn the first among all internet insurance companies.
The announcement No.18 issued by the PBOC stressed that non-bank payment institutions should give full consideration to the usage of both non-cash and cash payments. No party shall reject cash or take discriminatory measures to exclude cash payments. Public promotion of the concept of cashless payment is forbidden and financial institutions and public service should set up manual cash payment channels.
In China, about 13% of residents still rely on cash payment including the elderly and non-smartphone users. Cashless payment is convenient for many people but should not bring barriers to the group that use cash.
According to Macau media, the Macau Monetary Authority is working with the PBOC to follow up the central bank’s digital currency research and development. The MMA will study the future feasibility of using digital currencies in Macau. It has also planned to revise the region’s currency issuance system and add additional legal non-physical payment options.
Bloomberg recently reported that the DCEP was considered to be used in in casinos. But the Macau Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau has denied this.
Suzhou is currently conducting China’s second public pilot test of the digital RMB (DCEP), following the first pilot recently held in Shenzhen. Under this second public test being held in Suzhou, 100,000 red pockets, totaling RMB20 million will be issued. These will be valid from December 11th to December 25th. Over 10,000 merchants have signed up to participate in this second public pilot round. Meanwhile, JD.com is also participating in this second round, becoming the first ecommerce platform to get involved.
The central bank’s Digital Currency Research Institute and China UMS, a subsidiary of China UnionPay, signed a strategic cooperation agreement on December 8th. The parties will leverage UnionPay’s consumer network, conduct joint research, and expand the product functions and application scope of the digital renminbi. UMS is one of the largest comprehensive payment service providers in China. Its POS business was ranked the 1st in APAC according to Nelson in 2018. Its existing payment network will further promote the construction of the digital renminbi ecosystem.
Duoduo Wallet, launched by Pinduoduo, China’s largest e-commerce platform, is currently undergoing internal testing. The payment service is provided by Fufeitong (付费通), a third-party payment company controlled by Pinduoduo through affiliates. Fufeitong, established in 2003, has numerous 3rd party payment licenses, including internet payment and mobile payment. In the second quarter of 2020, the e-commerce platform had approximately 643.4 million monthly active users. Pinduoduo currently supports Alipay and Wechat Pay, which charges merchants for withdrawal or transfer. The new wallet Duoduo will support free withdrawal to bank cards to acquire new users.
The British Standards Institution (BSI) recently issued Jiajia Payment (家家支付), a Chinese payment platform that focuses on serving the residential sector, with its ISO27001 information security management system and ISO27701 privacy information management system certification. These two standards have become internationally recognized authoritative system certification standards in the field of information security. The BSI, a national standards body, produces technical standards on a wide range of products and services and also supplies certification and standards-related services to businesses.
On December 3rd, UnionPay International announced the launch of UnionPay PaybyLink, a link-based payment service, to provide merchants with a minimalist digital sales solution. With this solution, merchants are able to sell their products in just a few minutes by offering an online payment service to UnionPay cardholders via means such as SMS and e-mail, without the need of having to open online stores on e-commerce platforms.