United States Senators Marsha Blackburn, Roger Wicker, and Cynthia Lummis wrote a letter to the Board Chair of the United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee Susanne Lyons calling for restrictions on the use of China’s digital yuan by American Olympic athletes during the Bejing Winter Olympics.
What Happened: In the letter sent on Monday, the Senators “urge the United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee (USOPC) to forbid American athletes from receiving or using digital yuan during the Beijing Olympics.”
People’s Bank of China’s (PBoC) Digital Currency Electronic Payment (DCEP) is the country’s novel central bank digital currency (CBDC), often simply referred to as digital yuan.
As the letter points out, it “is entirely controlled by the PBOC, and can be tracked and traced by the central bank.”
The senators explained that “athletes should be aware that the digital yuan may be used to surveil Chinese citizens and those visiting China on an unprecedented scale, with the hopes that they will maintain digital yuan wallets on their smartphones and continue to use it upon return.”
The letter describes that the commission collaborates — by establishing the ban — “to protect the privacy of American athletes from the Chinese Communist Government” as “paramount.”
What Else: Chinese autorities responded to the statement suggesting that the American regulators might not understand how the digital currency works.
“We suggest they figure out what a digital currency really is,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian said at a regular press briefing in Beijing.
“The US politicians should abide by the spirit stipulated in the Olympic Charter, stop making sports a political matter and stop making troubles out of the digital currency in China,” he added.
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