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Chinese Billionaire Jack Ma Agrees to Cede Control of Fintech Giant Ant Group

Chinese Billionaire Jack Ma Agrees to Cede Control of Fintech Giant Ant GroupChinese billionaire Jack Ma recently agreed to give up control of Ant Group as part of changes to the fintech’s corporate structure, which will supposedly not have an impact on “the economic interests of any shareholders of Ant Group and their beneficiaries.” Once the process is complete, no single shareholder will have control over Ant […]

‘Operation Choke Point 2.0’ may have contributed to SVB collapse: Mulvaney

UN approves NFT standards initiative led by Tencent

Chinese entertainment giant Tencent will be collaborating on the project with a number of others, including Alibaba subsidiary Ant Group.

Chinese entertainment conglomerate Tencent has been approved by the United Nations to lead a project exploring the creation of a standard technical and security framework for non-fungible tokens (NFTs) .

The project, dubbed a “technical framework for DLT-based digital collection services” will be the world’s first U.N.-approved standards initiative for NFTs, according to state-owned local media.

The U.N. agency for information and communication technologies, The International Telecommunication Union (ITU) approved the project, which is expected to complete an initial draft by the end of 2022, according to a report from the South China Morning Post.

Currently, any recommendations advised by the ITU only become mandatory and enforceable when nations adopt them as law.

“The international standard aims to specify the technical architecture, technical flows, functional requirements, and security requirements for blockchain-based digital collectibles,” wrote Tencent in a statement released on Tuesday.

“It could help drive a consensus and common understanding around the world on the formation of a technical framework for digital collection services.”

Meanwhile, the Chinese government is in the process of developing its own state-backed Blockchain Services Network (BSN).

This will help the Chinese Government to support the deployment of NFT projects unrelated to cryptocurrency, which it banned once again in Sep 2021.

Tencent will collaborate with a number of other companies on the initiative, including Alibaba affiliate Ant Group, The Chinese Academy of Information and Communications Technology, Beijing University of Posts and Telecommunications and Zhejiang Lab.

Related: China aims to separate NFTs from crypto via new blockchain infrastructure

In China NFTs are often referred to as “digital collectibles” in order to avoid criticism from the anti-crypto media and government. For this reason, Chinese NFT-creators tend to avoid public or decentralized blockchains such as Ethereum or Solana, opting to create their collectibles on permissioned blockchains.

Despite the country’s apprehension for crypto, it’s clearly very keen on exploring potential use cases for blockchain technology.

At the end of last month, China announced the commencement of a national plan to expedite blockchain development and innovation across key areas including manufacturing, energy, government data sharing and services, law enforcement, taxation, criminal trials, inspection and cross-border finance.

‘Operation Choke Point 2.0’ may have contributed to SVB collapse: Mulvaney

Alibaba’s NFT Marketplace Allows Content Creators to Copyright Work via Blockchain IP Service: Report

Alibaba’s NFT Marketplace Allows Content Creators to Copyright Work via Blockchain IP Service: ReportThe Chinese multinational technology giant, Alibaba Group, has launched a non-fungible token (NFT) marketplace. According to regional reports, the Alibaba NFT platform not only provides customers with the ability to purchase and sell NFTs, but the marketplace also allows people to license and sell intellectual property (IP), as it is copyrighted by blockchain technology. Alibaba’s […]

‘Operation Choke Point 2.0’ may have contributed to SVB collapse: Mulvaney

Digital Yuan Launch Draws Near: JD.com Employees Paid in e-CNY, Tencent, Ant, Mastercard Engage With PBoC

Digital Yuan Launch Draws Near: JD.com Employees Paid in e-CNY, Tencent, Ant, Mastercard Engage With PBoCChina, the world’s most populous country, has jumped leaps and bounds in comparison to a great number of other countries when it comes to the creation of a central bank digital currency. As each day passes, China’s digital yuan is seemingly getting closer to large-scale adoption, as big-name corporations like the e-commerce giant JD.com, Mastercard, […]

‘Operation Choke Point 2.0’ may have contributed to SVB collapse: Mulvaney

Our Man in Shanghai: Digital yuan tests, ‘bear market’ and ‘NFT’ searches spike

Digital RMB testing for cross border payments and electric vehicles continues, sentiment takes a dive and blockchain events return to meatspace.

Sentiment in China has slumped as WeChat searches for Bitcoin dropped 7% this week, while searches for “bear market” spiked 102%. One trend that remained strong was NFT-related, with NFTs receiving an 86% increase in WeChat searches over the seven-day period. Token sales were another hot item with interest in Casper Labs surging after signups on CoinList breached 100,000 on global platforms.

One high-profile token sale to emerge from China was DAO-as-a-Service platform Dora Factory. The project, backed by DoraHacks, held a public token launch on March 21 with listings on OKEx, Gate and MXC. DoraHacks is well-known for hosting developer events and is one of the most active blockchain developer communities to originate from China. The team will be hosting a global hackathon series in 2021, landing in regions including Singapore, the United States, Germany and India.

Real world events back for spring season

Cointelegraph China kicked off their Hot Trends 2021 event in Chengdu on Thursday, welcoming a number of projects and industry participants to the southern city. The event’s speeches and panels are exploring the sustainability of trends such as DeFi and NFTs. Chengdu has long been an important city in the Chinese cryptocurrency mining space due to low electricity costs and developed infrastructure.

Solana and Serum's Defi Night in Shanghai 

Solana and Serum hosted a DeFi Night in Shanghai on March 20 as they continued promoting their ecosystem in Asia. The event also included speakers from Aave, Chainlink, Multicoin Capital, Raydium and The Graph. The ecosystem arms race has become important as major players such as BSC, Huobi (Heco), OKEx (OKExChain), and Solana all attempt to attract their share of the large development pool in cities like Shanghai, Beijing, Shenzhen and Hangzhou. FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried gave a keynote to the event via pre-recorded video.

Digital yuan tests

The Hong Kong Monetary Authority began working with the People's Bank of China Digital Currency Research Institute to test the technology that enables the use of digital yuan for cross-border payments, according to Yu Wai-man. Yu is the current Chief Executive of the HKMA. It announced on March 19 that these financial services are expected to launch in the second half of this year.

Also on March 19, several state-owned companies, under the guidance of the CPC Working Committee began applying the digital yuan to be used as a method of payment in charging electric vehicles in the Xiongan new area near Beijing. Among these companies were a sub-branch of the PBoC, Bank of China, China Telecom and the China State Grid. Linking the digital yuan with clean energy initiatives is quickly becoming a priority for state-related organizations, especially with the announcement that the new five-year plan would target carbon neutrality by 2060.

On March 23, Chinese state media outlet Sina reported that the six largest major government-owned banks have begun testing wallet services for the digital yuan. The banks would be able to whitelist testers who can then download the mobile app and set up a sub-account. Phase 1 of the formal pilot should begin next month

Ant Group’s blockchain paper

Ant Group, a major financial subsidiary of Alibaba, issued a white paper on blockchain and government services on March 17. The paper outlined how government organizations can use information technology, digital identity solutions and blockchain infrastructure to deliver and manage data. Ant Group has had a difficult period after their highly-anticipated public offering was canceled amid concerns about interest rates on electronic lending.

Case studies on money laundering

Finally, on March 21, the PBoC and the Supreme People’s Procuratorate (China's highest legal prosecuting authority) released six cases of modern money laundering methods, most of which included Bitcoin and cryptocurrency. In one of the cases, one convicted person received two years in prison and a fine for illegal fundraising via an unlicensed digital currency trading platform.

This new weekly roundup of news from Mainland China, Taiwan, and Hong Kong attempts to curate the industry’s most important news, including influential projects, changes in the regulatory landscape, and enterprise blockchain integrations.

‘Operation Choke Point 2.0’ may have contributed to SVB collapse: Mulvaney