DCEP (Digitial Currency Electronic Payment) is a national digital currency of the China built with Blockchain and Cryptographic technology. The currency is pegged 1:1 to the Chinese National Currency – the RenMinBi (RMB). The overall objective of the currency is to increase the circulation of the RMB and international reach – with eventual hopes that the RMB will the a global currency like the US Dollar. DCEP is the only legal digital currency in China (cryptocurrency such as Bitcoin are not legal tender in China).
Huang Qifan (Chairman of the China International Economic Exchange Center) said they have been working on DCEP for five to six years now and is fully confident it can be introduced as the country’s financial system. It’s currently being rolled out, with the People’s Bank of China (PBoC) issuing the currency.
DCEP can achieve real-time collection of data related to money creation, bookkeeping, etc, providing useful reference for the provision of money and the implementation of monetary policies
Huang QiFan at the China Finance 40 Forum
Deployment and Distribution
DCEP will initially be distributed to all commercial banks affiliated with the Chinese Central Bank such as ICBC and Agriculture Bank of China. The significance of DCEP is that it’s designed as a replacement of the Reserve Money (M0) system, cutting back the cost and friction of bank transfers. This initial deployment will serve as an official production test for the currency system, where the network and security will be validated. In the second phase, DCEP will be distributed to large fintech companies such as Tencent and Alibaba to be used in WeChat Pay and AliPay respectively.
Mandate to adopt Blockchain
President Xi JinPing has mandated that the ‘country’s development of blockchain technology should be sped up ‘ on Oct 24th in front of the Political Bureau. This speech has also been echoed by Li Wei, head of the People’s Bank of China. China has adopted the “Blockchain, not Cryptocurrency”, whereby the benefits of Blockchain is highlighted. On the other hand, cryptocurrencies that are native to Blockchain are suppressed as Cryptocurrency Exchanges and ICOs are banned in the country.
DCEP is a Centralized Currency
DCEP is a digital currency that is run on a centralized private network – the Central Bank of China has complete access and control of the currency. This is a huge contrast to Bitcoin, which has an open decentralized network where there is no centralized leader. In the case with DCEP, the Central bank of China has the ability to create or destroy DCEP.