Chinese President Xi Jinping Endorses Blockchain in Recent Speech

June 14, 2018
Cryptocurrency and Blockchain Tracker

视图

President Xi Jinping of the People’s Republic of China spoke on May 28, 2018, at a major conference of China’s scientific and technological communities. His remarks covered a wide range of topics, including blockchain.

Noting that the world is experiencing historical revolutions in the arenas of science and technology, President Xi urged his listeners to work vigorously and capitalize on opportunities to help China become the world’s central hub of those industries.

According to a translation of his speech as distributed by Xinhua News Agency, China’s official state-run press agency, Xi declared that “[the] new generation of information technology represented by artificial intelligence, quantum information, mobile communication, internet of things, and blockchain [is accelerating breakthroughs in various applications] …” He emphasized the belief that “innovation is the primary driving force” of a modern country and detailed efforts that China must undertake to use such innovation to advance itself on the global economic stage.

Blockchain first become well-known as the technology underlying the popular cryptocurrency Bitcoin. Although China currently prohibits the sale of new digital tokens via initial coin offerings (ICOs), interest in and development of blockchain and cryptocurrencies remain very strong in the country. This interest may arise from the fact that various agencies within the Chinese government have in recent times continued to advocate for blockchain technology and organize national initiatives to further its development.

China received widespread attention last year when officials took aggressive steps to halt cryptocurrency trading and ICOs. However, there remained a certain ambiguity over the extent to which such prohibitions would eventually be applied to other aspects of blockchain and distributed ledger technology.

Xi’s remarks represent a positive signal regarding the future of blockchain and its related applications in China. Chinese firms that were previously uncertain about the place of blockchain in the Chinese economy may now have more certainty about future prospects on the regulatory front.