China’s central bank digital currency (CBDC) continues to grow in scope, with the introduction of digital yuan payments for transportation services.
According to an official announcement made on Wednesday, the Beijing subway has inaugurated a trial program that allows passengers to use the digital yuan, also known as e-CNY, to access 24 subway lines and four suburban railway stations.
Customers with a bank account at the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, a major bank involved in China’s CBDC tests, are the only ones who can use the new service. To use the service, you must download a smartphone app that is linked to your bank account, according to a representative for the Beijing rail transit system.
According to the release, Beijing rail transit service providers will continue to promote a variety of digital yuan applications in order to improve the “new digital travel experience.”
The announcement comes just days after Suzhou, a city in East China’s Jiangsu province, announced a similar digital yuan integration. Suzhou was the first city in China to accept e-CNY payments for metro journeys, according to a Sina Finance report.
Beijing has emerged as a key location for China’s digital yuan testing, with a slew of e-CNY connections and projects.
Beijing had around 3,000 digital yuan-enabled ATMs as of mid-June, allowing the public to deposit and withdraw the digital currency. Beijing’s Local Financial Supervision and Administration had previously announced a plan to deliver $6.2 million in digital yuan to city residents.