Electronic transfers

China’s e-payment industry growing, despite risks

News analysis

The electronic payment (e-payment) industry and RMB digital commerce has grown rapidly over the past year in China, highlighting how money will be more easily controlled by the Communist Party of China (CCP) in China. power.

Compared to other payment methods such as cash, bills or bank cards, electronic payments are often more convenient, faster and not limited by time and location.

However, a widely used electronic payment model would make money flows more easily controlled by authorities or hackers.

By the end of 2021, out of more than 4,300 licensed institutions engaged in payment clearing and settlement services in China, 4,096 banking institutions had more than 19.3 million users, according to a recent report by the Payment & Clearing Association, according to China Financial News in June. 15.

In 2021, banks processed non-cash payments worth 441.556 trillion yuan ($659 trillion). Among them, online payments almost tripled compared to 2012, and mobile payment activity increased more than 200 times since 2012.

Electronic payment users in China reached 904 million in 2021, an increase of 49.29 million from the previous year, accounting for 87.6 percent of all internet users.

China’s ongoing zero-COVID policy, in which city-wide lockdowns have led to the isolation of millions, has only added to the boom in the online payment industry.

Today, electronic payments are permeating everyday life in China, including public transportation, personal payments, and restaurant purchases.

Network payments are expected to be even more integrated into people’s work and lives in the future with the rollout of 5G.

A front desk worker at the Prince Ski Town Hotel checks the phone behind a sign that reads ‘digital renminbi (e-CNY) is accepted’ in Zhangjiakou, China on Dec. 4, 2021. (Andrea Verdelli/Getty Images)

digital RMB

Meanwhile, the digital RMB, or renminbi, is also being promoted in China. In January, a pilot of the Digital RMB application was launched on the Android and Apple App Stores.

Digital RMB would not be a virtual currency, but a digitization and demonetization of RMB.

Last October, China’s central bank opened 140 million personal digital renminbi wallets.

As long as both parties to a transaction have digital wallets installed on their mobile phones, they could use digital money transfers even without internet access or bank accounts, according to Xinhua on Jan. 6.

Earlier on April 18, 2020, when the CCP first launched digital RMB, Financial Cold Eyes, a financial channel on YouTube, warned that the Chinese regime may exploit digital currency to monitor people’s privacy. , limiting personal freedom, depriving companies and individuals of their assets and supervising capital outflows.

The opinions expressed in this article are the opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of The Epoch Times.

Shawn Lin

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Shawn Lin is a Chinese expat living in New Zealand. He has contributed to The Epoch Times since 2009, with a focus on China-related topics.