EY to extend enterprise blockchain to China on ‘localized’ Ethereum via BSN

Global consulting giant EY is partnering with the Blockchain Service Network (BSN) to expand its Ethereum-based OpsChain to the Chinese market.

The firm said in an announcement on Friday that it plans to offer its EY OpsChain to developers in China via the Blockchain Open Source (BCOS) enterprise network that runs on the China state-sanctioned BSN as well as via the "localized" version of Ethereum that is set to be integrated with the BSN.

The BCOS is an open-source enterprise blockchain rolled out by the Financial Blockchain Shenzhen Consortium (FISCO), a joint effort by a range of Chinese technology firms including Tencent and Huawei.

It has been integrated with the BSN, which is a centralized infrastructure that allows developers to build decentralized apps on top of both public and permissioned blockchains that it supports, like Hyperledger Fabric, Ethereum, and Polkadot, etc.

The expansion plan comes months after EY launched OpsChain, an Ethereum-based procurement solution for enterprises designed to convert procurement agreements into blockchain smart contracts.

EY said OpsChain will be its first solution deployed on the BSN and it will use the platform to complete the integration and deployment of EY Blockchain Analyzer for blockchain analytics and financial statement audit.

“By offering both FISCO BCOS and Ethereum, EY professionals will serve clients within China and across the Asia-Pacific region and connect those users to the global blockchain. I see this as a key step forward in connecting the world’s largest economies through blockchain technology," Paul Brody, lead of EY Global Blockchain, said in the announcement.

However, to cater the Chinese regulation with a known yes-blockchain-no-crypto policy, EY's OpsChain will initially be available on a "localized" version of Ethereum on the BSN in China subject to regulatory approval. 

The BSN was previously reported to localize 24 public blockchains so that it can meet the regulatory environment in China. In essence, these localized versions can be seen as a hard-fork of the original network but will substitute crypto-based gas fees with Chinese yuan so that end users will not be dealing with crypto assets when making transactions.

According to a blog post on February 1, the BSN has completed the first batch of localization, which is an open permissioned COSMOS that runs in parallel to the public cross-chain COSMOS network.

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