NEO, a Chinese blockchain startup and platform, is currently in a race to become the number 1 blockchain platform for hosting ICO’s and decentralized applications or (Dapps) moving forward.
The Chinese government recently has put a halt to all ICO’s and Chinese participation in them for the moment. The regulatory move on ICO’s by the government in China was introduced to protect the countries investors from sketchy ICO’s.
ICO’s/Initial Coin Offerings
ICO’s also known as Initial Coin Offerings have become the latest trend in raising capital for startups. ROI’s or Return on Investments are often huge for early investors and therefore provide an attractive opportunity to flip some cash quickly.
According to an article by Reuters, “one reason regulators in China chose to take action was that the ICO fever extended beyond the traditional crypto community. The timing was an attempt to pre-empt this before it goes into a much broader mass market in China”. (Glen and Goh, 2017)
Beijing’s concerns were well founded and therefore decided to move quickly to prevent some of its citizens from possibly making bad financial choices. However, ICO’s are one thing but the technology as whole is currently suffering under the weight of regulation. This is not good news for Chinese innovators and blockchain developers such as those who developed the “Ethereum” of “China”, known as NEO who were primed and ready for mass adoption of the technologies financial and technological solutions to existing traditional challenges in those sectors.
Why Should Average Chinese Investors Care
Cryptocurrency markets are extremely lucrative and stable despite the markets volatility and speculative nature. The technology underlining cryptocurrencies such as NEO, Ethereum and Tezos for example all have the potential to transform the current world economic system and are doing just that. Governments who stifle innovation based on the disruptive nature of blockchain technology alone, will most likely lose a competitive advantage and leadership role in relation to the technology itself.
Chinese innovators such as those developers at NEO, were playing a significant role in the evolution of the technology until the Chinese government halted development for very good reasons. However, it would be wise for the government in Beijing to finally deal with the ICO ban as quickly as possible and allow Chinese blockchain innovators to return to the players table.
The NEO blockchain platform in this case could work closely with the government and comply to their wishes while at the same time providing an awesome and powerful platform for hosting ICO’s that raise capital for other Chinese based technological startups. In addition, Chinese investors could then invest in projects closer to home with the protection of the Chinese government at their sides. It’s a win-win for all.
Why does Blockchain Technology Matter?
Its important to understand the difference between cryptocurrencies and the technology that underpins them. Bitcoin was simply the first of these but was limited in what developers could do with it. That’s where platforms such as Ethereum Tezos, and NEO come in at.
NEO is said to be the “Ethereum” of China and has risen quickly despite development being hindered. In the blockchain world NEO has become the technological face of China and therefore is best positioned for representing Chinese interests and values in relation to blockchain technology.
NEO like Ethereum provides a platform for raising capital more efficiently, effectively and transparently than most traditional forms of fundraising. Secondly, it can host Decentralized Applications also known as Dapps that serve end users with products that can be used in the real world. For example, Dapps such as PROPY, leverage the power of the Ethereum blockchain to provide a quick and effortless way for purchasing property on an international level.
According to Newsweek, “Ukrainian developer Mark Ginsburg sold a property in Kiev to Michael Arrington, co-founder of the tech news site TechCrunch, for $60,000 via smart contracts on the Ethereum blockchain”. (Cuthbertson, 2017) This purchase was facilitated using blockchain technology and is only one of several use cases associated with cryptocurrency and blockchain technology.
It is important to remember that cryptocurrencies are not stocks. Cryptocurrencies may appreciate value like a stock but more importantly function as assets that can be used to exchange values, products, goods and services. Therefore, it’s likely cryptocurrency is here to stay. The technology will continue to disrupt legacy financial systems and everyday economic activity worldwide and China must take a leadership role in nurturing the technology not banning it indefinitely.
Blockchain Technology is for Both Young and Traditional Chinese Developers and Investors
For average Chinese investors the opportunity of a lifetime may be on the horizon due to the fact 2018 is expected to see even more growth in the cryptocurrency markets as institutional players become more and more involved.
In addition, cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology are inherently connected with Chinese technical expertise.
China today boasts itself and rightfully so as being a world leader in technological innovations. Why then is the most disruptive technology since the internet being mastered and developed everywhere else but China?
Despite Beijing’s concerns regarding ICO’s, young Chinese students are not being enabled to think about and develop blockchain systems that have unique Chinese touches. Moreover, the world is adopting blockchain technology at an alarming rate which should be a concern for Chinese leadership who are charged with nurturing the next wave of great Chinese thinkers, innovators, economists, and so on?
I personally view Chinese innovators and blockchain developers as some of the best in the biz and therefore believe it would be unfortunate for blockchain technology and both Chinese developers and investors (young and old) if they were prohibited in the long term, from taking part in this amazing technology.
Jovan Smith/ Columnist