China Say Big YES to Blockchain and to Lead Global Blockchain Innovation & Regulation
28 February, 2018- China is now in blockchain fever, with the People’s Daily — a Communist Party mouthpiece — once again reassuring readers that China is not only pro blockchain technology running a full-page coverage but should also create “an invincible position in the future international blockchain battle.” Blockchain has been the “hotly contested spot” and “national strategy”.
The 3 editorials in the full-page coverage by People’s Daily ignited quite a stir in the blockchain industry and again exploded on social media in China. Around two-thirds of the spread is devoted to “Three Questions on Blockchain,” an explanation of the technology elaborating on “What is blockchain?”, “How can blockchain be used?” and “Will blockchain be the new panacea” with insight from industry experts. The passage below it is “Seize the Blockchain Opportunity”, and the rest “Be the Leader in the Digital Economy” unveiling the developing goal of blockchain.
“Consensus” has been reached among the top-level in China
In the “Three Questions on Blockchain”, the third question— “will blockchain be the new panacea?”—reveals what policymakers are probably thinking about blockchain.
“The technology is not yet mature and we must be wary of speculation. Be particularly careful to distinguish between technological innovation and fund-raising innovation and must not just pursue the concept of blockchain. Blockchain does create much value, but its risks cannot be ignored.”
He Xi, a senior media commentator and entrepreneur in blockchain, points out that the aforementioned risks refer to the market speculation which may result in “bad money driving out good money”.
The editorial also quotes 2016 White Paper of China Blockchain Technology and Application Development to show the government support of blockchain in China. The government will introduce relevant policies, and clarify suitable scenarios for the application of blockchain and fields encouraged, so as to guide the enterprises engaged in the application of blockchain technology.
It thus shows that people at the top have had in-depth research on blockchain technology, and reached a kind of “consensus”, namely blockchain technology has been deemed as “a hotly contested spot” and “national strategy”.
Blockchain is encouraged, but be wary of ICO
“Seize the Blockchain Opportunity” points out that government leadership and scientific oversight is urgently needed to regulate the sector and outline usage cases for the technology.
The top-level is bullish on blockchain but give out warning on scamming ICOs, calling it concept speculation and “virtual heat”. It isn’t focused on solving real-world problems, but in money raising. Most ICOs are financial tool innovation and have nothing to do with technological innovation.
In this context, ICO is the red line of blockchain development. Government has drawn the red line and do not try to cross it!
As the second largest economy and its advantage on mobile payment, China should seize this blockchain opportunity to take lead in digital economy.
The full-page coverage of Chinese government mouthpiece forebodes the arrival of spring for blockchain entrepreneurs, while it may be the winter for crypto speculators.