China goes full speed on blockchain: President Xi Jinping endorses tech

This is the first time the president has expressed support of blockchains in public.

Profane Mao Zedong stunts aside, blockchain technology is making monumental leaps in China lately. Despite choking the life out of cryptocurrencies, ICO’s, and mining, the country has been looking favorably at the underlying tech beneath them.

The past few months, government agencies have been embracing the technology, launching initiatives to integrate them into their processes. They even dedicated millions of dollars to attract talent and start-ups into the newly opened Hangzhou Blockchain Industrial Park.

But none of these can compete with the most recent event to unfold: China’s President Xi Jinping himself has given the technology his clear blessing at a conference by the Chinese Academy of Sciences. While the president’s stance on blockchain technology has been apparent with different branches of the government pursuing blockchain research and development, this is the first time the president publicly endorsed the technology.

A rough translation of his speech goes as follows:

“Since entering the 21st century, global scientific and technological innovation has entered an unprecedented period of intensive activity. A new round of scientific and technological revolutions and industrial changes are reconstructing the global innovation map and reshaping the global economic structure,” Xi said, pointing out several emerging branches of science technology that are set to disrupt global industries.

“The new generation of information technology represented by artificial intelligence, quantum information, mobile communication, internet of things, and blockchain accelerate the breakthrough in application and bred new life science fields represented by synthetic biology, gene editing, brain science, and regenerative medicine.”

Xi added that the country must keep up with development if they want to secure their place as a front runner in the world.

“If China is to flourish and rejuvenate, it must vigorously develop science and technology and strive to become the world’s major scientific center and innovative highland. We are closer to the goal of the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation than at any time in history. We need to build a powerful world of science and technology more than any other time in history.”

As the industry evolves, governments are pushing through with a competition all of their own, something Bitmain co-founder Jihan Wu pointed out recently at the CoinGeek Conference in Hong Kong. Governments now have to compete in fostering blockchain and cryptocurrency development, Wu explained. Countries who fall behind miss out on advantages and economic opportunities and will later be dependent on those who established their territories for the new age early.

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