The people of the Chinese city of Shenzhen will have a chance to participate in an upcoming lottery event to encourage the adoption of the country’s new central bank digital currency (CBDC), known as the DC/EP, digital renminbi, or digital yuan.
It has been reported that the lottery is scheduled for January 26, when lots will be drawn to select the 100,000 winners who will each receive a festive “red envelope” packet containing 200 yuan ($31) in DC/EP.
However, the total currency issued and distributed for the event will amount to 20 million yuan ($3.1 million) in value.
The report said that two stipulations have been set for those residents who wish to take part in the lottery. They must have purchased social insurance from the commercial entities they work for and have definite plans to stay in the city during the upcoming Lunar New Year holiday, also known as the Spring Festival.
It has been analyzed that these conditions limiting the lottery to employees at participant commercial entities make this round slightly different from the two prior “red envelope” promotional lottery schemes that were held in two other districts in Shenzhen city, in the Luoho District in October 2020 and the Futian District in January 2021.
According to the report, the gifted currency will be expendable at selected merchants who have already signed up for the digital yuan system, 35,000 merchants in total, during a week-long period between February 1 and 9, as winning participants will not be able to transfer their red envelope to a third-party.
Likewise, local media presents the event as a part of ongoing pilots of the new currency, as a means to promote its adoption, and as a way of encouraging Shenzhen employees to stay in town for the Lunar New Year festival as part of measures for controlling the COVID-19 epidemic.
Earlier lottery pilots were deemed successful, with the vast majority of participants successfully receiving and spending their digital currency red envelopes.
Thus, after a slightly differently configured pilot scheme that was held in the city of Suzhou last year, e-commerce merchants similarly reported a significant volume of transactions using the digital yuan.