Xinhau News Agency, which is the Chinese State Newspaper, one of the sole distributors of official Communist Party of China propaganda, and has a viewership of 1.4 billion people, published an article on its front page titled ‘Bitcoin: The First Successful Application Of Blockchain Technology’ in what seems to be a sharp reversal of Chinese policy.
China has already banned cryptocurrency trading, and came close to banning cryptocurrency mining but backed off, at least for now. It seems the general stance of China up to now is to cripple Bitcoin since it is perhaps perceived as a threat to government power due to its anonymity and immutability, which make it difficult to control.
Surprisingly, the article discussed the aspects of Bitcoin (BTC) which were important for future currency development, as well as highlighting Bitcoin’s (BTC) anonymity, although it did mention that Bitcoin’s (BTC) anonymity facilitates illegal activity.
Zooming out, the most shocking thing about this is that the Chinese government is suddenly allowing an article to be distributed to most of the nation that generally talks positively about Bitcoin (BTC). Up to now, Bitcoin (BTC) has basically been censored in the state media, and any mention at all of Bitcoin (BTC) no matter how short would have been surprising.
Notably, this sudden policy reversal on allowing Bitcoin (BTC) related journalism is coinciding with a blockchain technology push in China. In particular, China continues to develop a national cryptocurrency that will connect the People’s Bank of China (PBoC) with commercial banks, helping to digitalize China’s financial system.
It can perhaps be speculated that this Bitcoin (BTC) article is a leadup to China announcing the launch of its national cryptocurrency, an event that has long been anticipated. It would make sense to educate the public about the history of cryptocurrency before implementing a national cryptocurrency. However, this theory cannot be confirmed at this time.