Suzhou Issues 20 Million Yuan in Digital Renminbi During Double 12 Shopping Festival

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The Jiangsu-province city of Suzhou has just held a 20 million yuan lottery to issue winners with digital renminbi for consumer purchases.

The lottery held on Saturday 12 December during China’s “Double 12” e-commerce festival saw the issuance of 100,000 “red packets” (the traditional Chinese gift-giving envelope) each containing 200 yuan in digital renminbi to winning participants via a purpose-made app.

The winnings may be spent at nearly 10,000 selected retail stores during the period until 27 December, with any unspent digital renminbi to be rescinded subsequently.

These stores include super markets, convenience stores and restaurants, as well as JD.com’s e-commerce site, which has become the first e-commerce platform in China to accept digital renminbi payments.

The Suzhou lotto will also trial the use of “dual offline” transactions involving the completion of payments with the digital renminbi via the tapping of electronic devices equipped with near-field communications capability.

The Suzhou trial comes after the Shenzhen municipal government held a 10 million yuan lottery on the weekend of 10 – 11 October, awarding 50,000 winners with 200 yuan in digital renminbi.

The 200 yuan in digital yuan could only be used to make purchases during the period from 12 – 18 October at 3,389 select retailers in Shenzhen’s Luohu district, in a bid by local authorities to spur consumption in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

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