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Architect of PBoC’s Digital Currency to Lead China Securities Depository and Clearing Corporation

Yao Qian, the former architect of China’s central bank digital currency, has left his position to take up the role of general manager at China Securities Depository and Clearing Corporation Limited (CSDC), the state-run Shanghai Securities News reported on Monday.

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Yao has served as the director of the Digital Currency Research institution at the People’s Bank of China (PBoC), the country’s central bank since it was founded last year. As one of the most influential figure in the blockchain space, the ‘scholar official’ is spearheading an initiative to create a digital Yuan.

He has sketched out two different futures of the issuance of the digital fiat currency—– one where the central bank itself is the only issuer of the digital currency, and the other where the central bank might authorize commercial banks to issue such instruments. Besides, Yao also draws up the framework for a new digital currency wallet model. Under his leadership, the research wing has so far filed 41 blockchain patents which focus on the digital currency system,topping the list of most relevant patents filed.

In an op-ed published on Oct.9, in which he was still being cited as the PBoC’s digital currency head, Yao indicated that the government regulated stablecoin could be part of its financial infrastructure and the underlying system. “In the world of digital assets, the lack of authority-issued digital fiats is the root of the existing problem. The stablecoin can be partly solve the problem. Thus the issuance of the CBDC should consider using blockchain technology.” Yao said.

It remains unclear who will fill the lead role at the research institution, but sources familiar with the situation told Tencent’s news outlet Yixian that Mu Changchun, Deputy Director-General of the Payment and Settlement Department at the PBoC,is the potential candidate.

The news comes just a week after the PBoC released a new recruitment notice, seeking talents with a speciality in blockchain, cryptography, finance and law in the latest efforts to accelerate the development of its own digital money. Further, the Digital Currency Research Institution recently has set up two branches outside Beijing recently to encourage the deployment of blockchain technology in real-life projects.

Before joining the PBoC in 2010, Yao once worked in the CSDC acting as deputy director and director of the Technology Development Department and System Operation Department. His return this time is at a time when the state-owned company that provides clearing services for the Shanghai and Shenzhen stock exchanges hopes to adopt blockchain in the traditional financial market. Back in 2016, the CSDC had signed an agreement with its Russia’s counterpart to implement post-trade blockchain applications.

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