The founder of cryptocurrency exchange Okex re-appeared after a month after cooperating with authorities in an investigation. Xi Jinping called on countries to work together on digital currency standards. Goldman Sachs expects the digital yuan will reach 1 billion users in 10 years, while news surfaced of a second lottery to test China’s digital currency.
The world of blockchain moves fast, and nowhere does it move faster than China. Here’s what you need to know about China’s block-world in the week of Nov. 18-24.
Crypto mogul emerges
The CEO of OK Group and founder of cryptocurrency exchange Okex resurfaced on Thursday after being unreachable for over a month, Bloomberg reported.
Xu Mingxing, also known as Star, posted on his Wechat moments that he had been cooperating with authorities investigating OK Group’s backdoor listing in 2017.
“The authorities have clarified the matter and proved me innocent,” Xu said, according to the report. The exchange said it expects to resume withdrawals by Nov. 27.
Okex paused cryptocurrency withdrawals on Oct. 16 because one of the key holders was unreachable, the exchange said. Rumors then began circulating that it was Xu.
Okex’s token, OKB, has gained about 19% since the news broke last week of Xu’s reappearance.
Xi urges cooperation on digital currencies
Countries need to come together to build standards for digital currencies “with an open and accommodating attitude,” Chinese President Xi Jinping said during the virtual G20 summit on Nov. 21.
The Chinese president said that digitalization is key to handling the global Covid-19 pandemic, but that a “digital divide” is emerging between countries that are pushing ahead with innovation and those that are being left behind.
1 billion users in 10 years
The digital yuan will reach 1 billion users in the next 10 years and account for 15% of China’s consumption, or RMB 19 trillion, in annual total payment value, Goldman Sachs said in a report.
The investment bank expects heated competition between banks and fintech companies for consumption transactions as the digital yuan is rolled out. (Coindesk)
Second digital yuan lottery
The city of Suzhou in eastern Jiangsu province on Dec. 12 will hold China’s second lottery to disperse and test the digital yuan, local media reported, part of ongoing trials.
Suzhou is one of four cities where China’s central bank digital currency is being tested, in addition to Xiong’an, Shenzhen, and Chengdu.
The testing in these cities had been limited to select individuals only until last month when Shenzhen held a public lottery and distributed RMB 100 million (about $1.5 million) worth of the digital currency to citizens in RMB 200 red envelopes.
The Dec. 12 giveaway will test new features, such as the digital yuan’s offline functionality, the report said. (TechNode)
Chinese investors MIA
Bitcoin, the world’s biggest cryptocurrency by market cap, has been on a bull run. It is currently trading at an excess of $18,000—a historical high.
But Chinese investors are reportedly sitting out the bull run, potentially the result of a number of reasons including the ongoing cryptocurrency crackdown and the 2018 crash. (Decrypt)