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China looks to expand blockchain pilot

(Image credit: Image Credit: Zapp2Photo / Shutterstock)

China is expanding its blockchain cross-border financing pilot, the country’s officials have said at a forum recently.

Reuters has reported that Lu Lei, the country’s deputy head of the State Administration of Foreign Exchange (SAFE) spoke during a forum in Beijing, where he said the institution will strengthen the integration between fintech and the foreign exchange market.

At the same time, the institution will also oversee the development of new technologies.

“We will gradually expand the scope of the pilot and the application scenarios of blockchain technology in cross-border financing and macro prudential management,” Lu said.

“At the same time, (the government) will push forward a prospective study on foreign exchange reforms to deal with cryptocurrency and explore the construction of the foreign exchange regulation and technology system under the new situation.”

According to LU, SAFE’s cross-border financing blockchain platform is the only one registered by a central state agency at the Cyberspace Administration of China (CAC).

The tool was launched in nine cities and provinces in March this year. Since then, it expanded to 19 different locations.

China has had a rather love-hate relationship with blockchain, the technology behind the globally popular Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. It banned trading cryptos a few times, but eventually gave in. President Xi Jinping recently said China should speed up the development of blockchain technology.

Following his words, many businesses rushed to get started.