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NHK has learned that the banking unit of Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group plans to carry out a large-scale trial of its own digital currency.

The bank plans to conduct the test of what they call MUFG Coin as early as next year in limited areas of Japan. The trial is expected to involve around 100,000 MUFG Bank account holders who apply to take part.

The participants will install an app on their smartphones that converts their deposits into the digital currency. One MUFG coin will be worth 1 yen.

They will be able to use the currency to make payments at places like restaurants, convenience stores and other shops. They can also transfer the currency to the accounts of other participants.

The bank officials will check to see if the settlements are carried out smoothly and in a secure way. For the future, they’re considering tie-ups with a wide range of businesses to offer services based on the currency

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