China's Blockchain Network Set to Go Live in April

China's planned national blockchain-based services network (BSN) is still set for its official April launch, despite concerns about potential delays due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The BSN is a distributed ledger technology (DLT) platform developed by the Chinese government working with other tech firms and financial institutions to make it easier for users to deploy their applications without having to build their own distributed ledgers from the ground up.

The BSN was unveiled and deployed internally in October for a kind of nation-wide beta test. The deputy head of China's Smart City Development Research Center, Tang Sisi, announced the news at the China Urban Regulation Innovation Forum in early January that it would be deployed globally in April, Sina Financereported.

The BSN was jointly initiated and established by the National Information Center, state-run telecom China Mobile, the Chinese government-supported payment card network China UnionPay, and  China Merchants Bank, along with several other enterprises and organizations. It was developed to provide a "trustworthy, controllable, and scalable alliance chain for corporate, enterprise, and government applications," the group has said.

The project's core goal is to change the high cost of the local area network architecture of the current alliance chain application. This initiative provides developers with a public blockchain resource environment based on the "Internet concept."

"The original intention of the design and construction of the BSN is to provide a public infrastructure network that can be developed, deployed, operated and maintained, interoperable, and supervised alliance chain applications at low cost," the project's organizers said in a statement translated from Chinese to English by  a Google app. "The service network will not support any public chain applications. On the service network, neither blockchain application publishers nor participants need to purchase physical servers or cloud services to build their own blockchain operating environment. Instead, they use the service network to provide unified public services and rent and share as needed. Resources, thereby greatly reducing costs for publishers and participants."

The current BSN service network has established forty public city nodes in various provinces in China. When the service network is officially opened, they expect the number of city nodes to reach about one hundred.

About the Author

John K. Waters is the editor in chief of a number of sites, with a focus on high-end development, AI and future tech. He's been writing about cutting-edge technologies and culture of Silicon Valley for more than two decades, and he's written more than a dozen books. He also co-scripted the documentary film Silicon Valley: A 100 Year Renaissance, which aired on PBS.  He can be reached at