For those unaware, China was once the home of Bitcoin. Its tech hubs spawned Bitmain and some of the earliest cryptocurrency investors, many of which have become “whales”.
But, this changed in 2017, when this nascent market presumably got too large for Chinese authorities to handle, leading to a mass crackdown.
By one point in 2018, trading on foreign exchanges, certain crypto-centric outlets, cryptocurrency-related payments made via WeChat Pay or AliPay, and even industry events were banned in China.
Although the local government never tipped their hand as to why they were curbing the local cryptocurrency ecosystem, the western world was sure that it was a result of the growing level of capital flight from China to Bitcoin and beyond.
In an odd turn of events, it seems that China — or at least some entities and individuals — have begun to push a pro-Bitcoin narrative once again, despite the fact that bans on the aforementioned ostensibly remain in place.
Bullish on Bitcoin?
The Bank of China — not to be confused with China’s similarly-named central bank, the People’s Bank of China — was recently reported by Blockstream’s Samson Mow to have released a full article on Bitcoin.
In a tweet posted on the weekend, the Chief Strategy Officer of the leading Bitcoin development firm drew attention to the article.
Yesterday the #BankofChina posted up an article about #Bitcoin. They explained how $BTC works, why the price is going up, and why it’s valuable. Never thought I’d see that happen. 😅 #Bullish pic.twitter.com/GKzj7XJjJa
— Samson Mow #ProBTC (@Excellion) July 27, 2019
Per his read of the article, which also sported an infographic to put concepts to pictures, the Bank of China authors mentioned how Bitcoin works, why the price of cryptocurrencies are rising, and why BTC inherently has value.
That’s not all. The infographic portrays key points in the history of the cryptocurrency space. It makes mention of the infamous Bitcoin pizzas, Warren Buffett’s thoughts on cryptocurrency, the 21 million coin supply cap, and its tumultuous price trend.
What’s obviously weird about all this is that the Bank of China is a state-owned commercial bank. And, as aforementioned, the Chinese state hasn’t been all too kind to the Bitcoin space over recent years. Even Tron chief executive Justin Sun made an appearance, which is somewhat ironic considering the reports about him possibly being under investigation by certain authorities.
Why all this was published isn’t clear. But likely hundreds of thousands of Chinese investors were exposed to Bitcoin, its value proposition, its history, and why it might not work because of this article. Arguably, it’s bullish.
This isn’t the only pro-crypto step that powerful entities in China have taken. Just recently, the Hangzhou Internet Court ruled that Bitcoin is legally-protected as virtual property in China.
As reported by Blockonomi on an earlier date, this legalizes the ownership of Bitcoin in China, as the court purportedly acknowledged BTC’s scarcity, value, and ability to be used. Of course, this is far from a relegalization of trading. But, it’s a step in the right direction for sure.
What’s With the 180°?
It’s crazy to see how far the Chinese cryptocurrency space has come. It has gone from entirely bullish to anti-Bitcoin sentiment to cautious optimism. But why so? To be fair, there are few concrete answers. But there are some opinionated theories.
This writer believes that China’s sudden decision to warm up to Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies has much to do with the stance of the Trump administration and other people in power. As readers of this publication are likely well aware of, President Donald Trump, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, and countless Congressmen aren’t all too pleased with digital assets, as they fear that they pose a risk to economic stability, the safety of citizens, and so on and so forth.
With there being a trade war brewing between China and the U.S., the former may have thought it logical to loosen up on cryptocurrencies to try and get an advantage over its opponent.