• Bitcoin slips to USD 7,131 but avoids testing the key support level for the moment
  • A former Chinese central bank executive is now heading a new tech regulation division
  • The Bank of Lithuania urges central banks to be more open towards crypto and should not seek to exert “parental control”

Bitcoin fared a little worse today, slipping several hundred US dollars to a daily low of USD 7,131 and not very far away from a high of USD 7,269 (CoinDesk), demonstrating just how little volume has been changing hands on mid-week trading. Either way, it could be good news for Bitcoin bulls if consolidation is on the cards, or even if USD 7,000 support levels causes a bounce.

While we wait for new sentiment to determine the coming trend for Bitcoin trading markets, we examine how the securities regulator in China is now setting up a technology division whose incoming boss used to work at the central bank’s digital currency initiative. According to media portal Caijing, Yao Qian, a former director of the Digital Currency Research Institute at the People’s Bank of China (PBoC), is to be the new director of the first technology supervision division at the China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC).

Yao is currently general manager at another branch of the CSRC, the China Securities Depository and Clearing (CSDC). Sina Finance elaborates that Yao is a veteran crypto manager, already the central bank’s first director overseeing digital currency research in 2017. He is credited with contributing to the development of the digital yuan as part of a broader fintech and innovation directive.

The incoming director’s positive attitude towards blockchain has been documented, although he has tempered the positivism with warnings of the possible risks that could come with mass adoption. Blockchain has its recognized benefits, he said, but also needed to address its shortcomings if it were to “become the financial infrastructure of the future”.

On Monday, BitcoinNews.com reported that a pilot for China’s first central bank digital currency (CBDC) has been confirmed as early as next year, solidifying plans for a digital yuan to be used across the country.

Meanwhile, the central bank of Lithuania has asked central banks not to exert the obsolete “parental controls” over digital assets, and they should nevertheless enter the space to gain a keener understanding of the technology.

Its comprehensive analysis of CBDCs said that banks needed to participate in the space to gain more experience. Bank of Lithuania board member Marius Jurgilas was quoted in an accompanying statement in English as saying how he found the fast pace of evolution in the area of digital assets to be fascinating:

“It is not prudent to be a casual observer, as this puts regulators and supervisors in the anxious position of a parent who is disgruntled to see that his ‘parental controls’ are completely out of date. The preferred approach is to face the risks and gain hands-on experience in a controlled environment… If we truly aim to insulate the Eurozone from global technology-related threats and provide a competitive advantage to our businesses, European payment strategies must not be based on solutions of the past.”

The bank believes that the way forward for CBDC will depend greatly on the development of blockchain technology, and this process is being monitored and facilitated by the Bank of Lithuania. This comes in the form of its own private blockchain called LBChain, which it hopes to use to innovate public services, as well as to assist in local and international blockchain research for enterprise.

According to past reports, LBChain will be a form of collector coins, and there are already plans to release 24,000 of these tokens to the public by early next year to represent “a controlled experiment that can be considered an in vitro test of multiple practical aspects relevant to the broader CBDC discussion”.

Could Lithuania be trialing its first real-world use case for CBDC ahead of China? We can only wait and see.


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