Japan is gearing up to launch a digital currency in both the public and private sectors as it trails China, which is in the trial stage of launching its own.

  • According to the Japan Times, the country's Digital Currency Forum aims to create “some form” of digital currency similar to Facebook’s diem plan, by 2023.
  • The group is preparing to conduct a feasibility study for its virtual currency in 2021.
  • “China has prompted moves toward digital currency (around the world),” Hiromi Yamaoka, a former Bank of Japan official, told the Japan Times. 
  • China has done so at "surprising speed" while "central banks tend to take a cautious stance,”  added Yamaoka, who expects China to officially launch its digital yuan in 2022.
  • China has been accelerating its push toward the adoption of a digital currency as the People’s Bank of China works with banks and commercial entities on public pilots to gauge user experience.
  • In October the People’s Bank of China launched a pilot program that provided digital yuan to citizens selected by lottery in Shenzhen, and in Suzhou earlier this month.

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