The article is penned by Marcus Lim, Zipmex CEO and co-founder.
Historically China has always been at the forefront of innovation; inventing the compass, gunpowder and paper, and paving the way for multinational trade with the ancient Silk Road network and trade by sea.
Now, it’s carving a name for itself in the blockchain space. It’s an interesting move for a nation so heavily ingrained in notions of centralized power, to take a liking to a technology that’s all about decentralization.
And strategic that China’s President Xi Jinping has become the latest champion of blockchain technology when he stressed the need last week for more research and innovation so that China could take the reigns and gain ‘new industrial advantages’.
President Xi sent the stocks of almost 200 blockchain-related companies jumping 8 per cent last week, according to an index compiled by East Money Information, after he publicly called for faster development of the blockchain sector.
His endorsement also follows recent news that the People’s Bank of China is looking to launch a central-bank-issued digital currency – even though it previously banned digital currencies several times.
It’s just the latest case for why Asia is the centre of the global cryptocurrency market. So what’s caused even the jewel of the orient to change its tune?
Building an oriental empire
With Asia’s startups, corporates and regulators hungry for digital assets, it’s no wonder China is looking to take a larger slice of the crypto pie.
China currently holds the most blockchain and crypto patents compared to any other country in the world, and despite the various crackdowns on digital currencies since Bitcoin’s inception,