Applications and Use Cases

China Accelerates Blockchain Development Following Crypto Ban

June 09, 2021

At the same time that China has effectively banned cryptocurrency and shut down crypto mining and trading activity, the country has set out guidelines designed to foster blockchain development.

The Chinese Ministry of Industry and Information Technology published guidelines this week designed to accelerate blockchain technology applications and industrial development in tandem with the Central Cyberspace Affairs Commission. The guidelines are meant to serve as instructions to IT offices in provincial as well as municipal governments throughout the country.

The publication also sets long-term goals to build blockchain companies and applications designed to empower various sectors of China's economy as part of president Xi Jinping's Digital China strategy. The guidelines will be used to apply blockchain technologies for improving public services and protecting digital intellectual properties. They will also be used to increase transparency in government data sharing as well as legal depositions.

The blockchain initiative comes on the heels of a massive crackdown on cryptocurrency mining and trading at the end of last month. The country's financial industry regulators banned financial institutions and payment companies from providing cryptocurrency-related services. Chinese citizens may still own cryptocurrencies, but essentially can't do anything with them.

The crackdown resulted in market volatility for crypto, with Bitcoin's price falling 30 percent after the announcement. More than two dozen crypto influencers as well as blockchain media outlets in China also had their accounts suspended on social media platform Weibo following the announcement.

The move clearly hasn't stopped the Chinese government's blockchain push. Local governments have been instructed to offer political and economic support for a variety of initiatives, including building blockchain industrial parks, providing tax benefits for blockchain startups and increasing funding to promote talent and development within the blockchain field.

Edited by Luke Bellos



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