Bitcoin Bulls Are Back As China’s President Xi Pushes Fast Track for Blockchain Development
Bitcoin’s latest rise to $8,585, at time of writing, coincides with recent statements made by China’s President Xi Jinping that are bullish on blockchain, the technology that underlies Bitcoin.
President Xi says the country must “seize the opportunity” to become a global leader when it comes to adopting blockchain technology.
Xi, whose comments came as part of the 18th collective study of the Political Bureau of the Central Committee on October 24 in Beijing, notes that blockchain technology has a wide range of use cases within China. He states that the distributed ledger may be used to enhance processes related to financing businesses, improving mass transit and alleviating poverty.
According to Xi,
“We must take the blockchain as an important breakthrough for independent innovation of core technologies. [We must] clarify the main direction, increase investment, focus on a number of key core technologies, and accelerate the development of blockchain technology and industrial innovation.”
With Bitcoin up 13.27% at the time of writing, industry leaders are weighing the impact of the US Senate’s Libra hearings earlier this week where Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg pointed to rising competition from China with respect to digital finance and payments.
The intense scrutiny of Zuckerberg along with condemnation of Libra, the company’s digital currency project, however, has put a spotlight on China’s competitive activities. According to reports, it was Facebook’s announcement of Libra back in June that reportedly spurred China to speed up the development of its own central bank digital currency (CBDC).
Such a move would make China the world’s first major country to issue a sovereign digital currency.
Now, with President Xi’s latest remarks, Bitcoin and crypto markets are on the rise.
Says Alex Mashinsky, CEO of Celsius Network, one of the industry’s largest crypto lending platforms,
“I do think Zuckerberg’s testimony got a lot of people worried of a bigger retaliation from regulators, but after most of the questioning had nothing to do with cryptocurrency or Libra – and with reports this morning of China premier Xi describing blockchain as a ‘rule of law network’ – spirits have risen and the bull is back.”
Changpeng Zhao, CEO of leading cryptocurrency exchange Binance, also reveals reports of China’s leading social media platform WeChat using blockchain technology to record receipts.
“The screenshot is a receipt from WeChat pay with a link to view it on the blockchain explorer.”
Just got word that WeChat pay in Shenzhen now puts receipts on the blockchain? pic.twitter.com/ucwYsUYV2c
— CZ Binance (@cz_binance) October 25, 2019
According to a report by local media outlet Xinhau News Agency, President Xi is emphasizing the expansion of blockchain across a number of sectors.
“It is necessary to use blockchain technology to explore digital economic model innovation, provide power for creating a convenient, efficient, fair and competitive, stable and transparent business environment, and provide services for promoting supply-side structural reforms and realizing the effective docking of supply and demand in various industries, in order to accelerate new and old kinetic energy.”
“It is necessary to explore the application of ‘blockchain+’ in the field of people’s livelihood, and actively promote the application of blockchain technology in the fields of education, employment, pension, precision poverty alleviation, medical health, commodity anti-counterfeiting, food safety, public welfare, social assistance, etc.”
“It is necessary to promote the combination of the underlying technical services of blockchain and the construction of new smart cities, explore the promotion and application in the fields of information infrastructure, smart transportation, energy and power, and improve the level of intelligence and precision of urban management.”
It is necessary to explore the use of the blockchain data sharing model to achieve the joint maintenance and utilization of government data across departments and regions, promote business synergy, deepen the ‘run-up once’ reform, and bring better government service experience to the people.”
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