China is actively testing its central bank digital currency (CBDC). Beijing is the next city to receive a digital yuan airdrop.
The Beijing municipal government announced over the weekend that it will hand out a total of 10 million yuan ($1.55 million) to 50,000 people in the city who register for the lottery giveaway using mobile phone apps. The results will be announced on Feb. 10. According to CNBC, recipients will be selected from a pool of applicants, who must have a Chinese ID number or a residence permit from Hong Kong, Macao, or Taiwan.
Each person will receive 200 yuan (about $30) in digital currency in the form of a red packet. The two previous test cities, Shenzhen and Suzhou, also distributed digital yuan to their residents this way.
Six banks are participating in the test: Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, Bank of China, Agricultural Bank of China, China Construction Bank, Bank of Communications, and Postal Savings Bank of China.
From Feb. 10 to Feb. 17, during the Lunar New Year holiday, recipients can spend the central bank-issued digital currency at designated offline locations or on parts of the e-commerce site JD.com. Beijing is preparing for more pilot use of the country’s digital currency during the upcoming Winter Olympics in 2022.