Value of Chinese crypto NEO surges by 16%

Smart contract-based cryptocurrency NEO has seen its price surge in the last week, gaining more than 16 per cent and significantly outperforming Bitcoin and Ethereum.

The Chinese-based altcoin appears to be benefiting from renewed interest in blockchain by the Chinese government and optimism over the planned launch of its NEO 3.0 iteration in 2020.

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NEO has much in common with Ethereum – both are smart contract based blockchains that support decentralised applications, often known as dapps. NEO, however, runs a proof-of-stake (POS) system, which is less energy intensive than the crypto miner-rooted proof-of-work (POW) algorithm used by Ethereum. NEO’s supporterssays this makes it more scalable than its rival.

The price surge seems largely driven by the Chinsese government’s renewed interest in blockchain. President Xi Jinping’s recent call to expand blockchain in the country prompted  positive articles in state media, notably the People’s Daily and the Xinhua news agency. In a further boost to alt coins, cryptocurrency mining was recently removed from China’s list of undesirable industries.

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The government’s change of heart seems to have benefited several Chinese cryptocurrencies, with smaller alt coins VeChain and Ontology up more than 40 per cent in the last month.

There is also renewed optimism among investors that NEO’s blockchain network could be chosen to host China’s rumored Digital Currency Electronic Payment (DCEP) – potentially be the biggest adoption of blockchain technology since the birth of Bitcoin.

NEO has significant expansion plans for 2020 in the launch of its NEO 3.0 flagship development. This is expected to bring about native contracts, and make it simpler for other digital  currencies to harness its technology.

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