Chinese President Hails Blockchain As ‘Breakthrough’ For Economy

China Xi Jinping blockchain breakthrough for economy

The president of China, Xi Jinping, has become the latest world leader to speak out in favor of blockchain, after hailing the technology as a potential “breakthrough” for the Chinese economy.

In his remarks, the first time he has publicly backed blockchain, Xi described the opportunities from the technology as a crucial part of a wider technological revolution — one he is determined that China should take advantage of.

He made the comments during an address to academics at the Chinese Academy of Sciences earlier this week, where he spoke to the possibilities of blockchain and other emerging technologies.

“Ever since the start of the 21st century, a new generation of industrial revolution is substantially reshaping the global economic structure ... with artificial intelligence, internet of things and blockchain constantly making application breakthroughs.”

Xi continued, informing delegates of plans to create blockchain labs that will focus on research and development, as well as ensuring “high standards” as China seeks to become a global blockchain leader in future.

While his address focused on blockchain in the macro, and failed to address any particular envisaged use cases for the technology, his comments have been well received locally by blockchain commentators.

The comments follow just a matter of days after the central administrative arm of the Chinese government referenced blockchain technology, a further indication of plans at high levels of Chinese public administration to embrace the potential of emerging blockchain technology.

The technology, which underpins cryptocurrencies like bitcoin and ether, has been linked to applications across industries as diverse as finance, logistics, food production and transport, with dozens of other sectors earmarked to benefit from blockchain developments.

The endorsement of the Chinese president follows several other similar moves from authorities in China, as the country becomes the latest to move toward a blockchain future.

Last week, the State Council instructed researchers working with the Guangdong Free-Trade Zone to increase their blockchain development efforts, as part of a wider growth strategy for the region.

Similarly, developing blockchain technology was previously featured in the 13th five-year economic development plan, which covers the period to 2020.