China Is Opening Doors to Blockchain — Private and Public

The first blockchain industrial park was opened in Shanghai’s Baoshan District in November 2016 with the goal of not only developing blockchain technology for government-related work, but also for connecting the technology with finance, insurance, real estate, intellectual property and other industries.

Shortly after the launch in Shanghai, blockchain industrial parks emerged in other cities across China, such as Hangzhou, Chongqing, Suzhou and Changsha, with a total investment of more than 170 billion RMB ($24 billion) and a large amount of this funding coming from the government. With this amount of investment and distributed “playgrounds” to explore the country’s future with blockchain technology, it is natural that China is aiming to become a leader in the blockchain space.

Over the past couple of years, Chinese businesses have led the way in blockchain patent applications worldwide, with total patent applications from the country exceeding 6,000. Among the tech triumvirate, collectively known as BAT (Baidu, Alibaba and Tencent), this figure is even higher, with Alibaba holding 534 patents alone, and many other organizations establishing blockchain departments focusing on “blockchain-as-a-service.” Other large commercial players like China Merchant Bank have partnerships with blockchain companies such as Cryptape.

Related: US and China Battle for Blockchain Dominance

China has always opposed perceived abuse of blockchain technology. Its crackdown on initial coin offerings in 2017 is a strong example of such. During this time, ICOs and fiat-to-crypto trading were banned in an attempt to regulate the market and safeguard Chinese citizens from scams amid a generally unregulated industry.

Despite this, China has possibly the most active secondary market in the space. This is why most global projects go to China to build their communities and promote their work. As a result, China might be the country with the most consortium chains and permissioned…

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