The first move that most countries have made in response to the growing ubiquity of cryptocurrencies has been to regulate or outright ban them. China is not innocent in this as they themselves have gone to great lengths to mitigate the mining and trading of digital coins within the confines of their borders, but recent news from the People’s Bank of China (PBOC) indicates that the country may be less opposed to blockchain based bills than their previous regulations have led us to believe.
At the PBOC’s Currency Gold and Silver Work Video and Telephone Conference held this past Wednesday, it was stated that the bank would continue to work toward the development of the nation’s own digital currency. This advancement toward creating their own national cryptocurrency has been viewed by many as a move aimed at protecting the value of the Yuan, but others have pointed out that the regulation of a single digital coin in China has implications beyond simply the preservation of the Yuan’s value. Some believe that this move is partially aimed at controlling the pool of currency miners in the country, as mining is currently an illegal activity there, and more acutely targeted at controlling the anonymous movement of assets outside of the country.
A country deciding to launch its own cryptocurrency is certainly rare, but it is not totally unheard of. Venezuela made headlines this month with the promotion of their commodity backed Petro coin and we detailed some of the inner workings of their new coin in our guide: What is a Commodity Backed Cryptocurrency?. A somewhat official national cryptocurrency named ‘Auroracoin’ was released in Iceland in 2014, and Equador developed their own digital currency system in 2015.
There also appears to be a few countries that wish to join China in developing their own national digital coin. Russia has released statements saying that they would like to have a crypto coin up and running before the end of the summer. Sweden has made similar statements, even going as far as to preemptively name their coin. Sweden’s national cryptocurrency will be known as the ‘E-krona’.