China’s Digital Currency Nears $10 Billion Spent

Hello as always, and welcome to today’s edition of Overbit Weekly Round Up.

Kicking off this week’s edition is how two of the biggest mining companies in the cryptocurrency space are moving in an unlikely plot of land.

According to CNBC, Riot Blockchain, one of the largest publicly traded mining businesses in America, is just four-tenths of a mile down the road from Bitdeer, a company spun out from Chinese Bitcoin mining behemoth Bitmain. Both of which are located in the tiny, 5,200 person town of Rockdale, Texas.

Rockdale has everything a Bitcoin miner might want in a dream home: crypto-friendly politicians, enormous tracts of land, abandoned industrial infrastructure ready for reuse, and the ability to link into Texas’ power system.

US Senator Cruz, whose predictions about Bitcoin and the mining sector, in general, have proven to be accurate, recently spoke on the subject at the Texas Blockchain Summit in Austin.

Cruz stressed the importance of Bitcoin miners’ capacity to flip on or off in seconds during his main stage interview, a characteristic that is especially useful when electricity must be moved back to the grid to fulfil demand.

According to Rockdale Mayor John King, the city has had around 40 requests from mining businesses interested in setting up business in the area, primarily Chinese miners.

Exiled miners have begun to seek asylum in countries such as the United States, which has just surpassed China as the world’s top mining destination. And for places like Rockdale, it seems to be a perfect match.

“The Rockdale economy was devastated for several years until the Bitcoin miners showed up,” said Lee Bratcher, president of the Texas Blockchain Council.

Closing today’s edition, we pivot over to China and the ongoing pilot of its central bank digital currency.

Reuters has recently reported that as of October, 140 million individuals have opened “wallets” for China’s new digital yuan, with transactions totalling roughly 62 billion yuan ($9.7 billion), according to a senior Chinese central bank official.

So far, 1.55 million merchants, including utilities, catering services, transit, retail, and government services, have been able to accept payments using eCNY wallets, according to Mu.

Despite such a strong start, Mu Changchun, the director-general of the People’s Bank of China’s digital currency institution, told Hong Kong’s “Fintech Week” conference that the digital currency, also known as the e-CNY, has no official launch date.

Central banks across the world are considering creating central bank digital currencies (CBDCs) to modernise their financial systems, fend off competition from cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, and speed up domestic and international payments.

Since China’s relationship with cryptocurrency is publicly complicated, this pilot program offers a keen glimpse into how less-than-enthusiastic governments may respond to the emerging crypto markets.

Thanks as always for reading Overbit Weekly Round Up – Have a great weekend!

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