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Pilot project for coinless society gains momentum

South Korea's pilot project for a coinless society has gained momentum as it enhances convenience for ordinary people, the central bank said Thursday.

Under the project that began in mid-April, consumers can deposit small change left from purchases of goods into their prepaid or mobile cards at convenience stores, discount stores and department stores, according to the Bank of Korea.

(Yonhap)
(Yonhap)

It means that consumers won't have to carry coins in their pockets after making cash payments.

The number of deposits came to 36,617 in the first 10 days of June on average, up from 32,862 between April 20 and 30. The value of deposits also came to 6.56 million won ($5,840), up from 6.43 million won in late April, according to the BOK.

The project could lower the cost of producing coins, though the BOK said the outcome of the experiment remains to be seen. Last year, South Korea spent 53.7 billion won producing coins.

Participants in the pilot project include CU, a major South Korean convenience store chain; Seven Eleven; E-Mart, the country's largest discount store outlet by sales; Lotte Mart; and Lotte Department Store. (Yonhap)

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