China Eyes $2 bln Blockchain Spending in Four Years

A report by global market intelligence firm, IDC, estimates China’s spending on blockchain technology will reach over $2 bln in four years. According to Xinhua, China’s expenditures on blockchain technology will see a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 65.7% by 2023 spanning across the banking sector, manufacturing, retail, and professional services with doors opening to other sectors too.

This means a slight uptrend change as IDC had earlier, based on China’s blockchain spending of $79.5 mln in 2017, estimated that the expenditure will reach US$1.67 billion by 2022 at a CAGR of 83.9% between 2017 and 2022. It forms a part of the firm’s updated Worldwide Semiannual Blockchain Spending Guide in which, as at August, it puts global blockchain spending  forecast by 2023 at $15.9 bln.

To see this outlook realized, even as IDC maintains that the official recognition by the Chinese authorities will push the applications of blockchain technology and power fast spending growth in the sector, China will have to see through several corresponding developments that would spur the optimal use of the advantages distributed ledger technologies have to offer.

With Hong Kong now issuing new regulatory regulations and granted the first batch of licenses – Tencent got a virtual bank licence and the market having strong expectations for the licenses of Huobi and OKEx, some of them may already be happening albeit not coordinated by an entity but gradually unfolding from various points to make mainland China more open to the blockchain industry.

Related to this projection is the prediction that there will soon be a court of blockchain and the first will be built in China. Ahead of the GCC LegalTech Summit in Dubai where the Chinese Supreme People’s Court is expected to showcase its innovation and technology programme, Chairman at The Metis Institute, Mark Beer (OBE), has suggested that the China International Commercial Court is another way that China is planning to reshape the global standard for dispute resolution and, with a blockchain court, will help to resolve blockchain and smart contract related disputes as it boasts of the power to enforce decisions.

Also expected at Digital Transformation Asia in Kuala Lumpur this week is the showcasing of the technological and process requirements of a proof-of-concept Catalyst project that includes China Mobile, Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE), Beijing University of Posts and Telecommunications (BUPT), AsiaInfo and Newland. They are working to develop a reference implementation of a decentralized application (dApp)-based capability exposure platform and marketplace which explores a new way for telcos to monetize their assets.

China Mobile and its partners have come up with a way to generate new revenue from app calls and data usage as well as position themselves as engines for innovation. The platform will allow telcos to make their APIs available to developers and settle payments automatically using tokens via smart contracts – this ensures trust for all stakeholders in the platform ecosystem – the CSP, partners and developers, and the end-users themselves. This use case will also allow CSPs to drastically scale the number of partners they can work with by removing manual settlements.

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