According to Bloomberg, Macau’s casino regulator, the Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau, has approached the city’s operators regarding the feasibility of using China’s sovereign digital currency, the digital yuan, also known as the digital renminbi, for purchase in Macau of gaming chips. The news outlet cited the source of the information as people it did not identify, but that were said to be familiar with the matter.
GGRAsia has approached the gaming bureau and the Monetary Authority of Macao, on the possibility of adoption locally of China’s central bank-backed digital yuan; and the legal framework that would have to be in place in Macau to enable its use. We had not received a reply by the time the story went online.
On October 23, China’s central bank, the People’s Bank of China, announced a draft revision of the central bank law that included updated clauses giving digital yuan the same legal status as the physical yuan. The Chinese central bank has also been carrying out localised pilot schemes testing the use of digital yuan in cities, including Shenzhen in Guangdong province, and Suzhou in Jiangsu province. But there has been no announcement so far of when China might officially launch digital yuan, according to mainland Chinese media reports.
Currently, Macau’s casino bets are mostly denominated in Hong Kong dollars.
Bloomberg said the Macau authorities were considering the adoption of digital yuan only inside the city’s casinos. The authorities did not plan to allow digital wallets, such as those offered by China’s Alipay or WeChat Pay, to be accepted for use on gaming floors, the report suggested.