Asia is leading the way in the use and development of digital currencies and remains the world’s largest digital payments market, with China alone accounting for more than half of the total transaction value worldwide, according to a new research paper published by Singapore’s DBS Bank.
‘Digital Currencies: Public and Private, Present and Future’ examines the latest developments in digital currencies, including private sector cryptocurrencies and central bank digital currencies (CBDCs), and analyses trends in digital transactions.
The paper looks at a number of CBDC pilots around the world, with a particular focus on the CBDC pilot by the People’s Bank of China and a Monetary Authority of Singapore project exploring the use of blockchain and distributed ledger technology (DLT) for the clearing and settlement of payments and securities.
It also brings together key findings from a range of surveys, research documents and other publications. These findings include:
- In China, 81.4% of smartphone users accessed mobile payment apps in 2019, with Alipay handling more than half (54.2%) of all mobile transactions in the country.
- In Singapore, digital transaction volumes will rise from US$15bn in 2020 to US$21bn in 2020, with 1.3m mobile payments users and 3.9m digital commerce users by 2024.
- In Hong Kong, digital payment transaction values are projected to rise from US$16bn in 2020 to US$25bn in 2024, with 2m mobile payments users and 6.3m digital commerce users by 2024.
- China is the world’s leader in Bitcoin mining, accounting for some 70% of the cryptocurrency’s computer power globally.
- Singapore is a global hub for initial coin offerings (ICOs) and ranks in the world’s top three issuance markets alongside the US and Switzerland.