Though China may have banned cryptocurrency trading and initial coin offerings (ICOs), a new report shows that the country leads the world in blockchain projects, accounting for at least 25 percent of all ongoing blockchain projects. This according to an April 2, 2019 report from China.org.
A Range Of Industries
Quoting Beijing-based data service provider Blockdata, the report says that China has at least 263 blockchain projects on the go at present. The technology that underpins cryptocurrencies, distributed ledger technology (DLT), enables transactions to be recorded publicly and chronologically, and cannot be tampered with. Today it is used across a range of industries in China including financial services, public services, healthcare, supply chains, smart manufacturing, and logistics.
The chief editor at Blockdata, Zhang Feixue, explains:
“The main strength of blockchain is in decentralized data management […] it can serve the real economy in terms of circulation and distribution. In the field of industrial economy, blockchain allows various assets to flow in the digital world, so it is a real gateway to digitalization for industries.”
Governments around the world are formulating regulations for cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology, but China has been the most pronounced country in this regard. In September 2017, the country’s regulators shut down fiat-to-cryptocurrency exchanges and declared ICOs as illegal, causing great concern among those who thought that this would negatively impact blockchain innovation in the world’s most populous country.
However, two years later and while crypto exchanges and ICOs may have relocated to greener pastures, the Chinese government is leading the rest of the world in its plans to develop blockchain technology without cryptocurrencies.
That said, reports emerged last year that the country’s central bank, the People’s Bank of China (PBoC) was in the process of developing a blockchain-based digital Chinese Yuan.
A Breakthrough Technology
Despite the ban on ICOs, the country is reportedly spending vast chunks of money to finance blockchain-related projects. The former director of the Institute of Financial Sciences at China’s Ministry of Finance told local media outlet Ifeng, that blockchain was an irreversible historical trend.
According to the report, there are at least 615 blockchain companies in China with over 80 percent of them having been founded between 2016 and 2018; half of those companies are targeting the financial industry. Chinese internet titans Baidu, Alibaba and Tencent have gone further to develop their own blockchain initiatives.