Asia and Australia

Welcome to another weekly blockchain news roundup from around the world. Here we present to you all the latest Bitcoin news continent by continent and country by country.

Japan

Japan Central Bank Examines Digital Currencies Again: The Bank of Japan (BoJ) has released its annual comprehensive report to reassess the role of central bank digital currencies (CBDCs) in the prevalent monetary system. This report has attracted attention after last year’s report stating negative opinions about CBDCs. BoJ has cast light on several approaches to implement a CBDC and has analyzed the probable outcomes of each method.

It has also divided CBDCs into two broad categories, one accessible to the general public such as currencies while the other limited to large-value settlements. The report also states that since wholesale CBDCs will not enhance or modify the existing monetary system, its focus must be shifted to the general purpose currencies. 

The BOJ doesn’t have a good opinion of CBDCs and stablecoins currently available in the market and that is why it doesn’t classify them alongside cryptocurrencies.

Japanese Internet Giant Recruit Has a New USD 25M Blockchain Fund: Recruit Holdings, the USD 45 billion Japanese internet giant and the owner of Glassdoor and many other enterprises, has recently splashed some cash to launch a USD 25 million blockchain fund.

Based out of Singapore, the fund closed in November 2018, but it was revealed to the public only this week following the crypto fund’s first investment in BeamNow.

China

Major Chinese University Launches Blockchain Research Center: One of the highest merit universities in China, Fudan University, has recently inaugurated a blockchain research center named the Shanghai Blockchain Engineering Technology Research Center. This enormous step towards the development of blockchain technologies was taken in collaboration with Zhongan Online Property Insurance Co., Ltd. and Shanghai Zhongren Information Technology Co., Ltd.

The center aims to research and develop the latest blockchain technologies, discover new applications, and conduct talent training. It will also go a long way in further promoting the development of the blockchain industry in Shanghai.

Other universities in China are also helping the blockchain sector grow. Recently, the Blockchain Technology Research Scholarship Program (BRSP) was announced by the Institute for Fintech Research at Beijing’s Tsinghua University. The scholarship is considered extremely beneficial for the future development of the sector in China.

South Korea

Hyundai to Integrate Blockchain into Financial System with IBM’s Help: In the recent IBM Think 2019 event IBM and Hyundai Commercial have announced a partnership to work on the development of a blockchain financial system. The collaboration will include the development of a new supply chain financing ecosystem for Hyundai Commercial while IBM will employ open source Hyperledger Fabric blockchain technology to accelerate the development.

The blockchain-based financing ecosystem aims to replace the current manual processing with automatic processing to increase operational efficiency and enhance data security while offering a real-time view of all transactions on blockchain to all network participants such as the distributors, manufacturers, and dealers.

Thailand

Government Moves Forward with Digital Securities: The Government of Thailand is working to amend the existing securities laws to accommodate digital security assets in the country.

According to an article from The Bangkok Post: “National Legislative Assembly (NLA) is “paving the way for scripless securities issuance and tokenized securities leveraging blockchain technology,”

The crypto sector is already gaining traction in the South East Asian country and with increased regulatory clarity, it is expected to show further progress.

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