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China: Blockchain Standards Planned for the Future

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China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology published a press release on March 12 explaining that they plan to launch standards for blockchain and distributed ledger technology. The Information and Software Services Division of the Ministry, established in 2008, will achieve this task by creating a committee.

Launching a Standardization Committee

According to a roughly translated version, the idea for the National Blockchain and Distributed Accounting Technology Standardization Technical Committee came only after careful studies and observations on DLT. Standardization companies have already created various rules for blockchain technology. The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) launched ISO/TC 307 with 31 participating members including China, Australia, Canada, the US, the UK and Japan, among others. The Standardization Administration of the People’s Republic of China (SAC) represents the country in the ISO committee. Other companies include the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) and the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C).

Although, dates are not specified in the announcement, the next steps consist of establishing the standardization committee as soon as possible.

China’s Stance on Blockchain Technology

The country publicly announced bans on ICOs and cryptocurrency exchanges last year. Its aim was crystal clear: digital currencies were not allowed but blockchain technology was welcome. This week, the Governor of the People’s Bank of China (PBoC), Zhou Xiaochuan, once again voiced the same ideas, “We do not currently recognize Bitcoin and other digital currencies as a tool like paper money, coins and credit cards for retail payments. The banking system does not accept it.”

But Zhou also talked about the importance of blockchain and distributed ledger technology in terms of keeping up with the growing developments in the world. Still, the country opposes the idea of decentralization – Zhang Ye, the Director of China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC),  stated at the “Two Sessions” event that apart from a few applications, everything else needs to be centralized.

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