A new fintech institution launched in the eastern Chinese economic hub of the Yangtze River Delta will play a key infrastructure role for the digital renminbi currently being trialled in cities around China.
The Yangtze River Delta Financial Data Centre (长三角数字金融数据中心) was officially launched in Suzhou on 26 October, to serve as a “main operations centre for the statutory digital currency.”
In future the centre will also “undertake functions including the production, issuance and operation of digital renminbi.”
The digital renminbi currently being trialled in China makes use of a “two-tier” system, with the Chinese central bank providing the currency to selected banks and financial institutions, who turn exchange it directly with consumers.
Suzhou is one of four cities in China that were included in trials of the digital renminbi first announced by the Chinese central bank in April 2020, alongside Chengdu, Shenzhen and Xiong’an.
Suzhou is also the site of two other major fintech trial initiatives – the micro and small-business digital credit pilot district and the central bank fintech regulatory sandbox.
According to a report from Mpaypass.com.cn more than 2,200 digital currency sites have come online in the city, connected to over 39,000 individual digital wallets.
In 2019 the Chinese central bank’s Digital Currency Research Institute launched the Yangtze River Delta Fintech Company (长三角金融科技有限公司) in collaboration with Suzhou’s Xiangcheng district and the Suzhou Gaotie New Town.
Xiangcheng district also worked with the Digital Currency Research Institute to launch the Yangtze River Delta Digital Currency Research Institute, which is currently in the process of creating a “digital finance development system” that focuses on funds, fintech and financial services.