The novel Coronavirus epidemic in China continues to intensify, which has severely impacted economic development, but may open a door for cryptocurrencies. Li Lihui, former governor of Bank of China, pointed out earlier that in the current environment, the pace of development of cryptocurrencies should be accelerated. In particular, electronic payment platforms such as WeChat Pay and Alipay have matured in China, and when cryptocurrencies are applied to the retail level, they will be determined by efficiency, cost, and convenience.
Li Lihui is currently the leader of the Blockchain Working Group of the China Internet Finance Association. In a recent interview with China Daily, he mentioned that under the influence of the epidemic, China should accelerate its issuance of central bank digital currencies. However, he also pointed out that as electronic payment platforms have matured in the Chinese market, WeChat Pay and Alipay are leading other similar platforms in the world in this field. Therefore, how cryptocurrencies are integrated into the retail industry “will depend to some extent on market choices.”
Earlier, Fan Yifei, deputy governor of the People’s Bank of China, pointed out that in order to improve the safety and health of the public when using cash, a new banknote of 4 billion yuan was issued to Wuhan before the Lunar New Year. At the same time, the People’s Bank of China has also suspended the inter-provincial transfer of cash and the province-wide allocation of severe outbreaks, hoping to reduce the risk of infection and virus transmission. The People’s Bank of China will also actively promote channels such as online and mobile banking so that the public can use the Internet for investment, payment, and shopping.
Yang Dong, director of the Blockchain Research Center at Renmin University of China, pointed out that the frequency of direct contact between Coronavirus has dropped significantly, and cash has been rejected by the public as a transaction medium. Therefore, in a short period of time, institutions and individual users are more inclined to use indirect contact such as cryptocurrency as a transaction medium, and this will be a great opportunity for the development of cryptocurrency.