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China’s Industrial Bank Publishes First-Ever Blockchain Whitepaper

In line with the growing importance of the blockchain industry in China, one of the country’s largest banks has introduced the first-ever blockchain whitepaper. According to a report from Sina Finance, the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC) has announced the launch of a blockchain whitepaper especially made for the banking industry.

The paper titled the “Blockchain Financial Application Development Whitepaper” was released on Apr. 21, and will provide guidance to practitioners in the banking industry and other related fields. 

Apart from offering the definition of blockchain, the document also offers detailed insight into the current issues the financial system faces and lays down ways in which blockchain can help solve them. 

This isn’t the first time the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China has been working on the burgeoning new technology – the bank has been deeply involved in blockchain research in the past few years, actively working on integrating blockchain with AI, big data, 5G, IoT, and other technologies. 

Aside from research, the bank has also realized several important projects that actually implement blockchain technology to fund management, supply chain management, trading, and traceability projects. The bank has successfully launched the Guizhou Poverty Alleviation Fund, Xiong’an Recquisition Fund, the ICBC e-Trust platform, and others. 

A blockchain solution is also being developed to be utilized by the Chinese Red Cross Society in the southern Guangxi province. The solution will be utilized to streamline relief efforts for those hit with the Covid-19 pandemic and will be deployed to other charities in the near future, the report said. 

ICBC’s whitepaper comes at a busy time for blockchain technology in China. For the past six months, the country has been rapidly developing the infrastructure needed to aid the “blockchainification” of some of its largest industries. 

Apart from that, the People’s Bank of China, the country’s central bank, has been working on its own central bank digital currency—the digital yuan. As reported by 8BTC, China’s long-awaited digital currency, referred to as DC/EP (digital currency/electronic payment), is currently in a closed test in the Agriculture Bank of China. The rest, according to local reports, will be part of a transport subsidies scheme for local government and enterprise employees in the Xiangcheng District of Suzhou next month.

Four state-owned banks—the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, the Agricultural Bank of China, the Bank of China, and the China Construction Bank—will be issuing the DC/EP payments.

At the same time, China’s national blockchain platform Blockchain Service Network (BSN) was launched last week on April 15 after a six-month-long internal test, and is set to launch for global commercial use on April 25. According to its latest whitepaper, BSN is expected to be implemented across the globe and be “the only global infrastructure network that is innovated by China whose gateway access is controlled by China”.

The blockchain revolution has also taken hold of the private sector in China. The country’s fintech giant Ant Financial also launched its own blockchain platform last week, which enables developers and small-and-micro enterprises (SMEs) to utilize innovative blockchain tools at a lower cost and higher efficiency rate. 

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