According to a notice posted by the Cyberspace Administration of China (CAC) on March 30, 197 blockchain service providers have been assigned registration numbers and are now approved to operate in the country.
Among the companies listed by the CAC are the likes of Tencent, Alibaba, and Baidu, who’ve already ventured into testing the capabilities of blockchain-based systems. Apart from IT giants, the list also includes a number of startups, financial institutions, and insurance companies, such as China Zheshang Bank and Ping An.
“This is the first step towards standardizing blockchain technology development and the regulatory environment in China. This also allows for an increasing number of companies to be able to develop blockchain applications on existing blockchains in accordance with the laws and regulations without being shrouded in stigma,” said Sunny Lu, CEO and co-founder of VeChain, commenting on the development in an interview with financial news outlet Yicai.
VeChain – a blockchain-based supply chain management services provider is one of two virtual currency projects listed by the CAC, with the second one, ParcelX (GPX) aiming to launch a crypto-based parcel delivery service.
The CAC uses regulations issued by China’s State Internet Information Office in its evaluation of blockchain projects. The agency has called on other interested companies within the industry to apply for registration.
The news comes shortly after the Beijing Internet Finance Industry Association released a public notice on initial coin offerings (ICOs), security token offerings (STOs), and initial exchange offerings (IEOs), declaring them all “illegal financial activities” in what seems to be a continuation of China’s love-hate relationship with the blockchain technology.