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China’s central bank attempts to develop digital currency

China's central bank is recruiting blockchain experts to develop its official digital currency, indicating that the use of national digital currency is sooner than expected.

The People's Bank of China (PBOC) is seeking six developers with Master’s or doctoral degree in computer science, information security and cryptography next year, according to the bank's annual announcement on job vacancies.

Affiliated to the Institute of Printing Science of PBOC, candidates are supposed to "fulfill the task of accelerating research and development work on the official digital currency," according to a separate recruitment file.

The exploration of blockchain, a key technology powering virtual currency bitcoin, has intensified this year by central banks in counties like the UK, Russia, Canada and Australia.

The technology supposed to support an efficient digital money system that does not carry the cost of handling cash, but questions remain to be answered on its impact of economy and financial stability.

Central bank in China set up a digital currency research team in 2014, carrying on “in-depth studies on mobile payment, trusted and controllable cloud computation, cryptographic algorithm and secure chip.”

The signals for central bank’s push on this technology also reflected on a September comment by Fan Yifei, vice governor of PBOC. He said that central banks should lead on digital currency and "open to any safe and effective technologies.”

However PBOC's governor Zhou Xiaochuan said there’s no timetable for the launch of digital currency, according to his previous interview with Caixin magazine. He said that digital currency will co-exist with cash for quite a long time before it eventually replaces cash.


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