Category Archives: China Blockchain News

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Chinese Tech Stocks Surge Post President Xi's Blockchain Endorsement

Chinese Tech Stocks Surge Post President Xi’s Blockchain Endorsement

Chinese Tech Stocks Surge Post President Xi's Blockchain Endorsement

President Xi Jinping’s endorsement of blockchain technology stirred a resurgence of interest in the country’s cryptocurrencies. As reported by BitcoinNews.com, the Chinese government standing committee, at the 12th national People’s Congress passed new laws to regulate cryptography which in turn will lead to the development of cryptocurrency and blockchain in the country. The increased Chinese interest in blockchain technology is spurring renewed hype in the industry which had cooled down a bit for a while now.

As reported by Bloomberg, amid the massive gains of more than 60 tech shares on Monday, Zhejiang Huamei Holding Co Ltd and Julong Co Ltd were the standout performers in Shanghai and Shenzhen. Moreover, there was a 30% rally in Bitcoin. A blockchain company, Xunlei Limited, also saw a 107% hike in stocks apart from the other blockchain companies such as baby-food producer Beingmate Co. and selfie-app developer Meitu Inc.

The Shenzhen Information Technology Index leaped by 5.1% on Monday, outdoing its 2-month performance. Blockchain-based companies such as Hundsun Technologies Inc, Easysight Supply Chain Management Co, and YGSOFT Inc also surpassed expectations.

Naturally, the stirred market sentiment is doing wonders for these companies. Li Shiyu, fund manager at Guangdong Xiaoyu Investment Management Co. said:

“Most of these companies, especially those that are just beginning to state their connection with blockchain today, are trying to take advantage of the hype. It shows how much excitement can be triggered by something stressed as a priority by the top man himself.”

Investors are also persuading other firms to jump on the blockchain bandwagon to make the most out of the situation. The entire setting is advantageous for the growth of the existing blockchain-related startups and is perhaps paving way for the birth of new ones.

 

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Chinese government

Chinese Government Passes Nationwide Cryptography Regulation

Chinese government

The Chinese government standing committee at 12th national People’s Congress has passed new laws to regulate cryptography and thus in extension the development of cryptocurrency and blockchain in the country. The move comes after a broader nationwide move to understand and develop skill sets needed for the development and propagation of new technologies including cryptography, which is the tech behind the creation and propagation of cryptocurrencies.

According to local news outlet CCTV, the new law will be enforced at the start of the next calendar year on January 1, 2020. The law will recognize the formation of a new regulatory framework for a new centralized cryptography institute and this institute will lead to increased public awareness for cryptographic work. It will also help legalize and regulate the industry as well.

While the law is exceptionally careful not to mention cryptocurrencies, it is clear that China is banking on a central cryptography institute to help develop cryptography technologies to develop centralized password management and eventually lead to a national cryptocurrency. Cryptocurrencies are currently completely banned by the Chinese government and only a small number of cities have access to the industry if any at all.

There is no official timetable for the launch of the cryptocurrency but as of now, the increased Chinese interest on blockchain technology is spearheading renewed interest in the industry which had cooled down a bit in the recent months.

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Leading Chinese Shipping Company Looking to Implement Blockchain Technology

shipping company

The possible implementation of blockchain technology to finance upstream suppliers is being explored by the China Shipbuilding Industry Company Limited (CSICL), People’s Daily (official Chinese newspaper) reported on 27 March 2019. China Shipbuilding Industry Corporation (CSIC), one of the two biggest Chinese shipping conglomerates, owns CSICL.

A strategic cooperation agreement, concerning supply chain services, was signed between Shanghai Bank and CSICL. A blockchain-backed online supply chain finance platform will be developed by Shanghai Bank and CSICL for CSIC’s upstream suppliers noted the agreement.

Company’s ten major product sections will be covered by the said platform, including, automation distribution systems, marine engineering, gas meters, storage batteries, port machinery, shipbuilding, large steel structure fabrications, turbochargers, diesel engines, and tobacco machinery.

The said agreement is a part of Shanghai Bank’s plan to integrate new technologies into its system to improve business processes.

Previously, in October 2018, an online supply chain financial service platform, named Uplink e-Chain was launched for medium and small enterprises by Shanghai Bank.

Wide application of blockchain technology in various supply chains, especially in the shipping industry has been seen recently. Earlier this year, Zim (largest cargo shipping company in Israel) launched its blockchain-based platform for electronic bills of lading to all clients.

Moreover, a port operating system backed by blockchain, named Edge.Port will be developed by Infotech Baltika (shipping logistics company based in Russia) in collaboration with blockchain startup Iconic (based in Moscow).

Furthermore, a pilot of blockchain-based maritime trade platform (TradeTrust), funded by the Singapore government will be launched during the on-going year. Singapore’s Maritime Port Authority, the Singapore Shipping Association, Singapore Customs and Infocomm Media Development Authority signed a Memorandum of Understanding back in January 2019 which led to the announcement of the pilot project.

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Chinese University to Launch Shanghai Blockchain Research Center

Chinese University to Launch Shanghai Blockchain Research Center

Fudan University in China has decided to setup a blockchain research center in Shanghai. The said university is one of the top-ranked institutes in the country.

According to the announcement, Shanghai Zhongren Information Technology Co, Ltd and Zhongan Online Property Insurance Co, Ltd will collaborate with Fudan University in order to establish the Shanghai Blockchain Engineering Technology Research Center.

The main goal of this initiative is to carry out fundamental level research on blockchain technology. Moreover, the center will provide essential talent training in demonstrating the utility of using blockchain technology in both existing and new systems. It is expected that the center will contribute towards the development of Shanghai economy and help in maintaining sustainable growth and development of the crypto sector there.

In order to promote research in crypto sector, other Chinese universities are offering special scholarships. Recently, the Blockchain Technology Research Scholarship Program (BRSP) was announced by the Institute for Fintech Research at Beijing’s Tsinghua University (THUIFR) in collaboration with Ripple. The program will allow top-notch Chinese graduate students to conduct research regarding international blockchain regulations and its impact on industrial development.

Furthermore, Ripple’s global University Blockchain Research Initiative (UBRI) was joined by the Chinese Institute for Fintech Research (Tsinghua University) earlier in February. Ripple launched the initiative back in June 2018. The aim of this initiative is to promote innovation, academic research and technical advancement in the crypto sector.

 

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“Dream City” International Blockchain Collaboration Between China and ConsenSys

In a world first, the Chinese City of Xiong’an will be home to a blockchain deployment program, transforming the newly-established ‘number-one urban project‘ into a “dream city”, backed by President Xi Jinping.

Mega-cities

Over the past three decades, urban development in China has been exploding; major cities have been receiving record levels of funding, and areas such as Shenzhen and Shanghai’s Pudong have been placed on a special list for development throughout the past 40 years.

Xiong’an is one of the most recent additions to the list of “mega-cities” and has been a largely underdeveloped area. In April, plans for the Xiong’an New Area were revealed as well as documents guiding the cities development through to 2035.

Bolstered by blockchain

These ambitious developments have received a rocket-fueled boost as a significant partnership between Xiong’an and blockchain development company ConsenSys.

On 23 July, ConsenSys and the Xiong’an government signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for the “dream city” project, marking the first time that Xiong’an has publicly recruited a foreign development studio to aid in its blockchain efforts.

Blockchain is high up on the city’s technological agenda, it is one of several technological fields that the government has listed as part of cutting-edge and can transform Xiongan into a leading tech hub for the country.

Joseph Lubin, Ethereum co-founder and ConsenSys founder said in a statement, “As one of our first major projects in the People’s Republic of China, we are excited to help define the many “use cases” that could benefit from the trust infrastructure enabled by Ethereum technology.”

According to the South China Morning Post, the full MoU has not been published, though in a statement ConsenSys wrote, it would “… follow with agreements addressing different aspects of this innovative multi-faceted initiative, and establish Xiongan as a next-generation smart city and a leading blockchain innovation hub”.

ConsenSys has several global partnerships on the go; Ireland is in partnership with the studio to develop and deploy Ethereum-based blockchain platforms and products, and the Philippines, for example, are working with the studio to bridge gaps between the unbanked and traditional financial services.

Billions upon billions

China is pumping extraordinary amounts of money into domestic blockchain developments. In April, one of the specially designated mega-cities Shenzhen was reported to be investing CNY 500 million (USD 80 million) into blockchain startups in the city in a public-private partnership.

Before that, the city of Hangzhou received USD 1.6 billion to invest in blockchain effort. The funding project has already opened a Blockchain Industrial Park with ten blockchain projects from around the world being “successfully contracted” into it.

Most recently, Nanjing City is set to receive CNY 10 billion (USD 1.48 billion) worth of investment to support public blockchain projects in another public-private fund that will support academic innovations, blockchain startups as well as established companies seeking to adopt blockchain technology.

 

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Chinese Government Not Withdrawing From $1.6B Blockchain Fund

In the midst of a scandal involving a major partner of the Xiong’an Global Blockchain Innovation Fund, a local news report that claimed the local government will be withdrawing its financial support has been denied by the fund.

Venture capital for blockchain

The fund is one of the largest of its kind in China as the country ramps up its support of blockchain initiatives, businesses, smart-cities and other blockchain related industry and institutions.

Worth USD 1.6 billion, part of the venture capital fund is coming from Tunlan Investment, a Hangzhou firm; 30% (USD 400 million) is being provided by the Hangzhou city government.

Government withdrawal

The report was published by the China Business Journal on 26 July and stated that the Hangzhou city government was demanding the fund to stop publicizing itself as a government-backed fund.

The piece refers to an “informed person close to Li Xiaolai” who made indications that governments decision withdraw came down to the aforementioned scandal, which have had negative impacts on the company and city government.

Cause for speculation

Conflict soon erupted when a public feud between Bitcoin advocate Xiaolai and venture capitalist Chen Weixing eventually led to Li’s resignation from the Xiong’an Blockchain Innovation fund, of which he was the managing partner.

Weixing accused Li of being a “fraud” and branded him “a tumor” of the industry, going so far as to accuse the Bitcoin evangelist of owing BTC 30,000 to a group of investors, a debt of which allegedly dates back to 2013.

After a period of back-and-forth responses from the pair, an audio recording from a private meeting that took place in January 2018 was leaked in July. In the leak, Xiaolai made brash comments against companies such as NEO, Ripple and Binance, which he called a “scam”. In early July, Li resigned.

Funding “not suspended”

Though the China Business Journal report had made a response denying that the Xiong’an fund was suspended, he also offered further clarification to CoinDesk that the government had not presently withdrawn or pulled out of future funding.

On 26 July, the fund also issued a statement, further denying the report saying, “There are many false reports on the report that “Xiong Fund is suspected of being stopped by the government for propaganda and investment.” Xiong’an Fund has not received any relevant notice from the government.”

Additionally, the fund says that it will continue with its original intentions, and will retain its right to “pursue legal liability for false reporting media”.

 

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Bitcoin Evangelist Li Xiaolai Resigns from $1B Government-Backed Blockchain Fund

One of China’s most prominent cryptocurrency investors and Bitcoin advocates, Li Xiaolai, has resigned from the Hangzhou Xiong’An Blockchain Innovation Fund, giving up his position as managing partner of the USD 1 billion Chinese startup.

A brief timeline of disputes and allegations

The resignation comes after venture capitalist Chen Weixing publicly began making hostile comments toward Li. Branding the investor as a “fraud” and a “tumor” of the industry, he went on to accuse Li of owing BTC 30,000 to a group of investors, dating back to 2013. According to Chen, this was not repaid as Li had “gambled” the funding away.

Li had later responded in detail to these accusations: “Once again, it’s not true. The fund was a private equity ‘equivalent to 20 million yuan (USD 3 million)’. And I never promised to guarantee the fund’s value using Bitcoin. My quote was ‘We hope (this fund) can outrun the Bitcoin market’. As for the ‘due in September’ part, the fund was set up in a ‘4+1’ model, so it ought to due in September this year. Chen is just muddying the water.”

Audio leak

The dust had barely settled on the matter before a recording of a private meeting that took place in January 2018 was leaked onto social media on 3 July. As reported by local media outlet Baidu, Li took aim at NEO, Tron, Ripple and Binance, going so far as to call the exchange a “scam”.

Chen was quick to follow up the scandal and further questioned the Xiong’An Blockchain Fund, challenging the government’s significant financial backing.

In April 2018, the Blockchain Industrial Park was launched in one of China’s biggest tech hubs, Hangzhou, home to some of the largest tech firms in the country such as Alibaba; USD 400 billion of funding was provided from the government of the city of Hangzhou.

The resignation

On Monday, 9 June, Li announced the resignation on his Weibo account, believing that his decision would maintain the integrity and reputation of the government-backed investment fund.

He wrote: “The series of defamations from Chen Weixing against myself has brought material and negative impacts on the reputation of Xiong’An Blockchain Fund… To let the Hangzhou government continue its push for blockchain development, I will resign from my role as a managing partner.”

However, Li will not be going down without a fight. Last Friday, he announced via his WeChat channel that a defamation lawsuit had been filed against Chen, to which Chen responded, calling for other “victims” to use this opportunity to take on Li in court.

 

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