(Yicai Global) May 11 -- China's central bank has handed eight firms, including real estate and insurance companies, fines ranging from CNY500 to CNY50,000 (up to USD7,795) for refusing to accept cash payments.
The cases involved property transactions, parking fees, and amusement park tickets, the People's Bank of China said in a statement yesterday. The fines were imposed in the first quarter.
The PBOC will punish and regularly expose those who stop accepting cash to protect consumers' legitimate rights and interests and to maintain the legal status of the yuan, it added.
Western China's Changji Country Garden Real Estate Development needs to pay CNY50,000 for requiring the client to pay a down payment on a house online. The person directly responsible was given a warning, along with a CNY1,000 (USD157) fine. A branch of Huatai Life Insurance in eastern China's Shaoxing went cashless in premium payments so it now needs to pay CNY20,000.
Paper money is becoming a rare sight in China. Some 85.4 percent of Chinese adults used online payments in 2019, up from 82.4 percent a year ago, according to the central bank.
Paper currency will account for only 6 percent of all point-of-sale transactions in China over the next four years as the Covid-19 pandemic accelerates e-commerce development, according to a recent report by Worldpay.
Editor: Emmi Laine, Xiao Yi