While many central banks are still investigating the possibility of issuing a digital currency, China has rolled out its own via a series of pilot programmes since last year.

The eRMB (my term, as opposed to the more awkward official name Digital Currency Electronic Payment or DC/EP) by itself will not help the renminbi (RMB) to challenge the US dollar’s global dominance.

Its true significance instead lies in its potential to alter the balance between China’s technology giants and traditional majority state-owned banks, thus indirectly enhancing the banks’ international competitiveness.

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