Blockchain has received yet another important endorsement as Chinese President Xi Jinping recognised the importance of the technology in a speech this week.
In a broad-ranging speech at the Chinese Academy of Sciences nineteenth annual conference on Monday, the president specifically mentioned blockchain as part of a technological revolution he envisions for China in the 21st century - remarking:
"Ever since the start of the 21st century, a new generation of industrial revolution is substantially reshaping the global economic structure ... with artificial intelligence, internet of things and blockchain constantly making application breakthroughs."
Mentioning several other breakthroughs in information technology - including quantum computing and advances in mobile communication, Xi sees blockchain as part of a new technological infrastructure that will allow the economic juggernaut to maintain its edge.
Blockchain in China
While this latest endorsement of the technology is significant - it is worth noting that there is a stark contrast between the official Chinese view of blockchain and prevailing attitudes towards cryptocurrencies.
Officials in China have had somewhat of a terse relationship with the emerging cryptocurrency market with the country seemingly plagued by scam after scam.
Just yesterday, it was reported that police in the eastern city of Jinan arrested 10 suspects in an alleged crypto pyramid scheme worth $47m, in the latest scam to capitalise upon the enthusiasm surrounding blockchain.
Authorities are still grappling with the sheer number of fraudulent operations - recently releasing a list of 421 fake cryptocurrencies as well as guidance for prospective investors in ICOs.
This latest blockchain endorsement from one of the world’s most powerful people is encouraging for the space as a whole, but again underscores the distinction between an appreciation for blockchain technology and positivity towards cryptocurrency.