The Bank of China and Meituan, a Chinese e-commerce company, have entered into a digital yuan collaboration agreement. This partnership aims to enhance their capabilities in central bank digital currency (CBDC). The agreement builds on their previous CBDC partnership deal signed in 2021. In addition to focusing on retail commerce, the two companies will develop solutions for CBDC-powered corporate services and explore cross-border usage cases for the digital yuan. They will also expand their adoption of “hardware wallets,” which are smartcards, SIM cards, or wearable devices that enable offline payments. Both China and Russia prioritize offline availability of their CBDCs to reach non-smartphone users and ensure inclusivity, as network connectivity remains an issue in some areas. The new agreement was signed at a recent service trade fair, with a shared commitment to leveraging the e-CNY to improve financial services’ availability and convenience. Meituan has already integrated digital yuan payment options into its Meituan Waimai food delivery network, while also distributing digital yuan vouchers to drive adoption. The Bank of China has been working with another e-commerce giant, JD.com, on a cross-border e-CNY pilot in Hong Kong. Last week, the town of Likou in Jiangsu Province agreed to become a digital yuan “demonstration town” in partnership with the Postal Savings Bank of China.