State-owned Chinese blockchain exploring the launch of NFTs

By Raffaele Redi

The digital collectables would be supervised by Chinese authorities

3D rendering illustration of non fungible token                                 
China considers NFTs as digital speculative assets and banned them with other cryptos - Photo: Shutterstock

State owned Chinese blockchain BSN is exploring the possibility of launching non-fungible tokens (NFTs) in the mainland as "digital collectables."

The idea originated from three major Chinese trading platforms – Tencent Magic Core, Ali Auction, and Ant Chain Fan Granules – which started a small distribution after China banned cryptocurrencies, though a few traditional NFTs based on ethereum are still in circulation on the black market.

Chinese digital collectables come with no contract and no value. They are digital pictures given for free and with no possibility to officially be resold on any market, as it is forbidden.

Planning for digital collectables

In 2019, Beijing Red Date Technology, together with the State Information Centre, China Mobile and China UnionPay, jointly initiated the construction of the Blockchain Service Network (BSN).

According to a report from a Chinese newspaper, which was shared by BSN, the Chinese Network announced the launch of the first NFT infrastructure at the beginning of 2022.

Nevertheless, the network claimed it would launch the first NFTs only when a path within the Chinese legal framework would be feasible for them as there are still several issues to address to "bypass" the ban on cryptos.

China considers NFTs as replacing renminbi (RMB) – the official currency of the People's Republic of China – in the market, violating the People's Bank Law articles 20 and 28 of the Regulations on the Administration of RMB.

The name "digital collectable" avoids the comparison with a financial asset and all the fiscal measures against digital assets. To do so, companies are not including the word "token" when translating into Chinese. Companies are also avoiding using the Ethereum blockchain, which allows people to pay and trade NFTs using cryptocurrencies, and is used in the West for minting NFTs.

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