China sets out high-level guidelines to foster blockchain development

One of China's central government ministries has set out high-level guidelines dedicated to fostering blockchain development in the country.

The Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT) published directional guidelines on Monday in its aim to "accelerate blockchain technology applications and industrial development" together with the Central Cyberspace Affairs Commission.

The guidelines serve as a high-level instruction to the country's information technology offices in provincial and municipal governments. It puts forth long-term goals to build blockchain companies and applications that can empower different sectors of the country's economy as part of Chinese president Xi Jinping's Digital China strategy.

Critical tasks under the MIIT's guidelines include applying blockchain technology to improve public services, protecting digital intellectual properties and increasing transparency in government data sharing and legal deposition.

To execute the high-level guidelines, local governments are being instructed to provide both political and economic support. This includes building blockchain industrial parks, offering tax benefits for blockchain startups and increasing funding to foster talents in the blockchain technology field.

Blockchain not crypto

With the latest central government direction, China appears to be rehashing its 'yes-blockchain-no-crypto' narrative. The guidelines come following a recent comment brought up in a central government committee meeting about cracking down on bitcoin trading and mining activities. 

Over the past weekend, more than two dozens of crypto influencers and blockchain media outlets on Chinese social media Weibo have suddenly had their accounts suspended.

The names of most of the suspended accounts included terms such as bitcoin, btc, or coin. Some suspended accounts also had the term "blockchain" but actively posted information that related to the crypto market sentiment.

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