China chasing the global blockchain throne
According to recent reports, the Bank of China has issued $2.8 billion worth of bonds using blockchain technology.
The bonds were used as part of small business loans, in order to leverage China’s own independently developed blockchain bond issuance system.
The bonds feature a two-year fixed-rate offering and a final coupon rate of 3.25%. According to the bank, the system represents “the nation’s first bookkeeping system based on blockchain technology”.
The news comes hot on the heels of China’s announcement of a planned integration of blockchain technology receiving notable global attention, as governing authorities in the country have been diving into projects featuring blockchain technology.
One such project is the Digital Currency Electronic Payment (DCEP) infrastructure, which will serve as the country’s national digital currency. It will be pegged 1:1 to China’s national currency, the Chinese RenMinBi (RMB).
Yang Wang, a senior research fellow at the Fintech Institute of Renmin University of China, stated that DCEP will have the capacity to handle 220,000 transactions per second at its peak. According to Yang,
In terms of technology, China’s digital currency excels, whether in its security level or speed, which means it will surpass competitors in user experience.
Beyond a Central Bank issued Digital Currency, the integration of blockchain in securities is also looming. Weimin Guo of the Bank of China, recently revealed that once the DCEP is functional, China will soon after provide a legal framework for Security Token Offerings (STOs). Guo added that the STOs must be implemented within a strict regulatory sandbox mechanism.
This is a significant turnaround from the comments made by Pan Gongsheng, the Deputy Governor of the People’s Bank of China, where he made a public statement in Beijing that STOs are effectively illegal. He stated:-
The STO business that has surfaced recently is still essentially an illegal financial activity in China...Virtual money has become an accomplice to all kinds of illegal and criminal activities.
Since the recent crypto crackdown with Binance and Tron banned on China’s largest micro-blogging service, Weibo, China's relationship to blockchain remains volatile, but the push towards global market leadership continues.