Since launching its digital currency initiative over five years ago, the People’s Bank of China (PBoC) — China’s central bank — has kept its mouth shut on the matter.
The outside world only knew of China’s intentions due to leaks and off-hand comments made here and there. Hence, there has been much speculation as to the details of the project.
A top industry venture capitalist recently joined in on this speculation train, telling CNBC in an interview that she believes the launch of China’s cryptocurrency is right on the horizon, even issuing her own timeline.
China’s Crypto Just 12 Months Away?
Edith Yeung, partner of Proof of Capital — a blockchain-centric venture fund that has made investments in Binance, Blockstream, and Stellar according to its website — told CNBC on November 20th that she believes China’s digital asset will “definitely” launch “within the next six to twelve months.”
While she didn’t cite a source backing this prediction, Yeung stated that China has been “really thoughtful” about how it wants to roll out its planned cryptocurrency to its 1 billion+ population, before implying that the amount of resources the nation has put into this project indicates an impending launch. Responding to a question about China’s timeline for the cryptocurrency, the investor explained:
“It could be quite soon. Even though it seems like the timing is right after Mark Zuckerberg got grilled by Congress, this is something that has been in the works for the past few years.”
The Chinese government has been "really thoughtful" about the digital currency electronic payment framework and its rollout.
— Edith Yeung (@edithyeung) November 20, 2019
Yeung’s assertion that China is on the verge of getting its own cryptocurrency comes shortly after CNBC reported that HCM Capital managing partner Jack Lee believes the PBoC digital currency network could launch within the next two to three months.
Her statement also comes hot on the heels of a similar report from Forbes, which suggested that “the technology behind the cryptocurrency has been ready since last year and that the cryptocurrency could launch as soon as November 11, China’s busiest shopping day, known as Singles Day.”
Don’t Hold Your Breath
While Yeung and others believe that the launch of the cryptocurrency is near, the PBoC has begged to differ. Per previous reports from Blockonomi, the Chinese central bank said last week in an official announcement that the “net news (online news)” that it has issued legal digital currency is categorically false. A rough translation of the statement reads as follows:
“The People’s Bank of China has not issued legal digital currency (DC/EP) and has not authorized any asset trading platform to conduct transactions. The People’s Bank of China has been studying the legal digital currency since 2014 and is still in the process of research and testing.”
The PBoC wasn’t done yet. China’s central bank continued that overseas and local reports that suggest dates for the launch of the “DC/EP” or ” Digital Currency Electronic Payment (DCEP),” as Chinese media has dubbed the project, are “inaccurate.”
U.S. Should React
Regardless of the exact timeline, Yeung opined that the U.S. needs to “hurry up” and react to China’s move to digitize the yuan.
Another prominent blockchain-centric investor, Anthony Pompliano, agrees with this sentiment. He wrote in a newsletter issue published earlier this year that the U.S. must move to establish a digital money system, specifically “to gain a [monetary/economic] advantage” and to “capture the imagination of hundreds of millions of people.”
This assertion has been backed up by French Hill and Bill Foster, two Congressmen who recently wrote the following in a letter to the Federal Reserve about digital currencies:
“We are concerned that the primacy of the U.S. Dollar could be in long-term jeopardy from wide adoption of digital fiat currencies. Internationally, the Bank for International Settlements conducted a study that found that over 40 countries around the world have currently developed or are looking into developing a digital currency.”