Beijing just intensified its clampdown on cryptocurrencies.
All thanks to increased fears of financial insecurity.
Authorities will block access to another 124 websites operated by offshore cryptocurrency exchanges that provide trading services to citizens. It will also monitor and shut down domestic websites related to cryptocurrency trades and initial coin offerings (ICOs).
Then, it’ll ban payment services from accepting cryptocurrencies, including bitcoin.
More than 88 cryptocurrency exchanges and 85 ICO projects are now shut down in China.
Widening its Crackdown
However, it’s not just cryptocurrency firms facing the heat, though.
The country is also going after hotels, office buildings, and shopping malls, too. None of them can host marketing events involving cryptocurrencies any longer. The government is also using WeChat to tighten the flow of information on cryptocurrencies. This is part of a larger effort to regulate social media, an important channel to cryptocurrency traders.
Tencent, the operator of WeChat, noted that it has shut down accounts permanently as they are “suspected of publishing information related to ICOs [initial coin offerings] and speculations on cryptocurrency trading.”
While coins are in the crosshairs, China still supports blockchain technology
The China Internet Report 2018 highlights the country’s efforts to become a blockchain leader.
In fact, President Xi Jinping wants to use blockchain to build a smart city.
Blockchain technology, artificial intelligence, and the Internet of Things are all major components of the “smart cities.”
According to Smart Cities World, “China is taking a more collaborative approach than some countries to smart cities by using the strengths of its top technology companies: Ping An (P), Alibaba (A), Tencent (T), and Huawei (H) to develop the PATH to Smart Cities initiative. So far over 500 cities in China have plans for smart city development.”
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