Chinese President Xi Jinping recently said that China needs to “seize the opportunity” afforded by blockchain technology. Blockchain can be integrated into almost every field imaginable in someway, similar to how the internet is applicable to just about every industry. We are seeing blockchain applied to finance, education, elderly care, power grids, video games, supply chains, and the advertising industry. The Communist party knows that blockchain can be leveraged to advance their agenda. It will also give them an edge on the technological front since the US is struggling to determine how to regulate the technology. Meng Yan, who is the head of the Chinese Institute of Digital Assets, said Xi’s latest statement could spark a race to become the global leader in blockchain technology.
Due to the US government’s lack of regulatory clarity regarding blockchain and cryptocurrency technology, we are seeing a lot of businesses move to other countries or wait on the sidelines before they get involved. We are, however, seeing multi-billion dollar companies commit to using blockchain and crypto. They have the resources to navigate the legal landscape and hire the lawyers necessary to do so. Facebook is probably the best example of this. Mark Zuckerberg recently said that we risk falling behind in the financial industry if we don’t compete with China’s new cryptocurrency, which should be rolled out within the coming months. China has been working on their cryptocurrency for the past 5 years and it will take a titanic shift in monetary policy to catch up to them. Similar to JFK’s commitment that we were going to put men on the moon within a decade of his announcement, we should start making the intellectual and financial investments in this technology to get to where we need to go.