China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT) released a whitepaper on 20 May 20th detailing the accelerating growth and prospective future of blockchain industries in the country.
China has notoriously been a slightly cryptocurrency-friendly environment; stances in the country seem rather juxtaposed. For example, initial coin offerings (ICO) and trading are banned entirely, but the nation still promotes blockchain technologies with e-commerce and tech giant Alibaba being a notable example of bullish attitudes toward blockchain technology in China.
The value of blockchain in China
However, the report from the ministry reveals that there have been 249 investment deals in blockchain companies in China to date. In 2016, there had been 60 funding rounds, in 2017, nearly 100 and so far in 2018,68 have been registered in the first quarter.
By the end of March 2018, there were 456 Chinese blockchain companies in China, nearly double that of 2016 which ended with 256; the white paper notes: “The industry is developing rapidly with more and more entrepreneurs and capital entering the market.”
Of these companies, 295 focus on blockchain applications with 86 utilizing blockchain for financial services and 109 are giving their attention to applications in real economic sectors.
These new heights for blockchain investments and enterprise growth are setting 2018 up to be a favorable year for the industry; the exponential growth of blockchain related startups can be attributed to the growing trend of equity financing for blockchain ventures. The whitepaper reads: “Our blockchain industry is currently at a high-speed development phase – entrepreneurs and capital are pouring in, and the number of enterprises is rapidly increasing.”
It further notes an acceleration of blockchain application as a new round of business model changes is promoted, resulting in “cost reduction” and “improvement of efficiency”, leading to a formation of an “integrity industrial environment”.
Bans but a promising future ahead
The report comes shortly after the MIIT released its monthly public blockchain ratings index, which lists 28 blockchain platforms and the cryptocurrencies backing them; which from China, is somewhat contrary to their ICO and crypto-trading stance.
Domestic exchanges, cryptocurrency trading, and ICO related websites are blocked, despite China identifying blockchain as a vital part of the future and promoting investment in the technology.
The paper overview also details six trends in China’s blockchain industry that indicate an exciting future in the skeptical country, reading:
“Thirdly, the blockchain will be widely used in the real economy in the next three years, becoming an important support for the construction of digital China. The fourth is blockchains to create a new platform economy and open a new era of sharing economy.”
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