China Gears Up to Deploy a Country-wide Blockchain Network

According to the state-run media organization Xinhua, China is rigorously testing the blockchain service network (BSN), which will operate throughout the country. This underlying development will help to reduce the cost associated with the development and usage of various blockchain applications, according to the deputy head of the SIC, Zhang Xueying.

The Relevance of BSN:

The local authorities, including the municipal government in China, have been using blockchain technology for their various projects for a while now. However, when it comes to a centralized adoption on the national scale, we are still to witness the convergence of efforts. Many experts see this development as a push to grow the blockchain industry in the country and help develop small cities using digitalization and new technologies. For laying down this countrywide blockchain network, SIC has joined hands with six leading institutions in the country, including the likes of China UnionPay and China mobile.

Procedural Developments:

The initiative is already in the beta testing phase, and while SIC is involved in the planning part of the process, China UnionPay and China Mobile will be providing blockchain technology support, network, and resources related to the data to implement the project.

It is still unclear what technology is underlying BSN but according to executive vice president of China Mobile, Li Huidi, this new project will ultimately make the blockchain services affordable in the country while completely changing the perception of blockchain being a high-cost network that requires you to spend a hefty amount of money for its usage and implementation.

The second major partner, China UnionPay is also very optimistic about the project, and according to China UnionPay President, Shi Wenchao, this new project is going to link government institutions, public enterprise, corporate entities, and technology companies which will ultimately help these entities to share the data safely and securely. A total of 50 public nodes will be deployed across 31 different Chinese cities, and all these resources will be available to use free of cost until March 2020.

Past Efforts:

Biggest telecom corporation of South Korea, KT  has recently teamed up with NDS (Nongshim Data System), for a food supply chain management by using blockchain technology. This blockchain project is used for the food safety network.

It is not for the first time that Chinese organizations are harnessing the prowess of blockchain technology. Take, for instance, China UnionPay. The company has started exploring the blockchain way back in 2015, and it has been using open ledger technology for a range of processes, including for invoicing, supply chain finance, and billing, among others.

The company partnered with IBM to come up with the loyalty point exchange program in 2016. Similarly, China Mobile constituted a consortium in 2018 to explore the possible areas where it can use the blockchain technology. Some of the important constituents of the consortium include China Telecom and China Unicom.

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