The editor of the Communist Party daily newspaper, People & # 39; s Daily, published a guide blockchain entitled Blockchain-a Guide for Officials the state document announced at the start of this week. The book seems to have gone online (link in Chinese) last month, and is intended to help the best communist officials better understand a technology that the party seems rather excited, as long as it can control it.
According to a description on the Chinese e-commerce site JD.com (link in Chinese), the book consists of about 20 previously published articles in state media such as People's Daily, Economic Daily and Guang Ming Daily, written by entrepreneurs, financial managers, media groups and blockchain experts. The articles explain the potential and possible applications of the blockchain in finance, together with the challenges that the government faces in regulating the industry. Introductory pieces, such as "Blockchain: a turning point in the world of the Internet" (link in Chinese) and "Application of Blockchain technology in the Internet era" (link in Chinese) describe blockchain as a transparent platform in which people they trust each other and trade under rules set by everyone.
The book could end up sending mixed messages to party members accustomed to rigid hierarchies and from top to bottom. In keeping with the standard description of blockchain technology, the articles promote it as a decentralized ledger that allows normal people. "The meaning of Blockchain … is trying to reach consensus as a way to govern a community," wrote Ye Zhenzhen, head of People's Daily Online, in the book. But the Communist Party is not so keen on decentralization and public participation.
While Chinese President Xi Jinping has officially endorsed the blockchain as a technology that "will profoundly affect the fate of the country," Beijing has banned cryptocurrency trading and ICO last year
"I think it has become a little out of control from an organic point of view, "said Jehan Chu, founder of Kenetic Capital based in Hong Kong, a cryptocurrency investment and advisory firm. "This is the way to restore China … they want to clean it up, organize it, get the right licenses."
China's approach became clearer in a show of an hour on the blockchain broadcast by the China Central Television broadcaster in June, when a senior official said:
When we talk about blockchain, many people talk about "decentralization". I'd like to make a small change to the word. I think the essence of the blockchain is "de-intermediateization". There is no way to get rid of the center.
Instead of millennial entrepreneurs, it is the People's Bank of China who will take over the cryptocurrency, and it could very well become one of the first major central banks to issue their own digital currency. The Chinese authorities have also discussed (link in Chinese) establishing a blockchain regulator to oversee the industry. In other words, the Chinese government wants to exploit the power of blockchain technology, provided it is blockchain with Chinese characteristics. This notion rejects many of the fundamental ideas associated with blockchain and cryptocurrencies.
"They want to do what they have with the Internet – regulate it and have their own version they can control," Chu said.