China drafted its first-ever blockchain plan as part of its five-year policy direction. The country currently has a nationwide ban on cryptocurrency but it has embraced technology such as AI and “smart cities” with open arms.
The latest plan highlights China’s general goals and priorities leading into 2025. It also lays out pressing economic matters while underlining the use of technology implementing plans. As part of President Xi Jinping’s Vision 2035 strategy, blockchain will play a transformative role in China’s technological advancement.
Speaking about blockchain, President XI Jinping stressed it would play “an important role in the next round of technological innovation and industrial transformation.” According to the South China Morning Post (SCMP), Xi’s comments on blockchain and its surrounding technology struck a cord. With the launch of a new blockchain program, the BSN (Blockchain Service Network) China has been adamant about advancing its own blockchain-based Internet system.
Blockchain for Smart Cities
Xi’s vision is that China’s incoming digital economy will “transform China into a global leader.” Many cities have already been implementing blockchain as part of their “smart cities” initiative. Combining AI with cloud computing (such as AWS) and blockchain has allowed several cities to advance enormously within the last few years alone. For example, in 2016, China began building smart cities and even implemented a City ID system. In short, this allows for connectivity and data sharing between cities, all based on blockchain tech.
In November of last year, the Chinese Embassy in the USA announced the launch of QR health codes for foreign passengers heading to China. The code shows a green “HDC” mark once proof of negative Covid standing (and overall satisfactory health) has been reviewed and approved. The health code system is also powered by blockchain technology. It was initially set up in the Chinese provinces of Guangdong and Macau.
Crypto is Still in Cold Waters
Crypto adoption, however, is still a gray area in China. While China has deemed cryptocurrency illegal, that hasn’t stopped its citizens from trading and engaging in crypto. Weibo, a Chinese digital currency platform, currently boasts over 500 million users. That’s more than the entire U.S. population.
AI in China’s Legal System
Under the same five-year initiative, China’s courts have also been upgrading their systems. The purpose of the courts is to integrate data analytics while storing evidence on a blockchain network. This will be China’s first AI-based legal system. Furthermore, China’s legal system has long been in the works to ramp up human rights protections. Properly storing evidence on the blockchain network makes it impossible to change maybe a step in the right direction.
Overall, it would seem that China is working on improving transparency. Its national five-year blockchain plan is a step in the right direction. It would finally make transparency possible for the sake of its own citizens.