China’s trial of e-CNY, the digital version of the national currency, the yuan, has extended to the insurance industry, with conglomerate Ping An encouraging medical staff in the southern city of Shenzhen to pay premiums for a Covid-19 insurance plan using the new currency.

Fast facts

  • One Ping An branch in Shenzhen is offering insurance policies to medical staff in the city’s Nanshan district, and policyholders are being encouraged to pay their premiums in e-CNY for special discounts, according to Ping An.
  • The policies include payouts of 50,000 yuan (US$7,700) for those confirmed to have contracted Covid, and 300,000 yuan should they die from the virus.
  • Chengming You, a general manager at the Shenzhen branch of Ping An Property & Casualty Insurance, told Forkast.News that the company planned to further explore the wider use of e-CNY in more payment scenarios, such as claim settlements.
  • You said it was Ping An’s first attempt to issue a policy enabling the digital yuan, and that it planned to expand the trials to policies that covered more professions, such as police and firefighters.
  • China has been actively carrying out trials of its digital yuan. The country’s central bank said in a white paper released last week that e-CNY trials had seen nearly 21 million personal wallets opened and transactions worth a total of around 34.5 billion yuan. Many believe China is trying to widen adoption of the digital money in time for the Beijing Winter Olympics in February.

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