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China’s First ITU Digital Fiat Currency Lab is Established in Hangzhou

China’s first digital fiat currency(DFC) lab supported by the UN International Telecommunication Union(ITU) was established in Hangzhou, the capital city of the country’s eastern Zhejiang Province, local news media reported Nov.19.

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The lab, known as ITU DFC lab,was initiated by the Digit Fiat Currency Institution and Stanford University. This is the third lab in the world that specializes in the research and test of safety and operability of state-backed digital currency technologies. The ITU DFC lab will give priority to the research of digit fiat currencies’ commercial use cases and technical practices in order to share knowledge and contribute to standardize central bank-issued digital currencies.

With the rise of privately issued cryptocurrencies, the ITU, the United Nations specialized agency for information and communications technology (ICT) set up a focus group on digital fiat currency in May 2017.More than 80 central banks around the world, including the People’s Bank of China, have joined the Focus Group so far, creating the world’s most comprehensive platform and highest level of gathering of global experts working on DFC.

The establishment of the new lab signals that China is stepping up efforts to accelerate the development of a DFC solution.

The lab settles down in the Hangzhou Blockchain Industrial Park which officially opened on Monday. In addition, the first batch of 9 other blockchain startups such as Yunphant Blockchain, GXshares, and Zhejiang Huamei Communication,Co.,Ltd also moved to the industrial park.

The Hangzhou Blockchain Industrial Park will provide comprehensive services, ranging from technology, capital, community to business models and intellectual property , for blockchain companies. It aims to nurture blockchain unicorns and help the city grow into China’s blockchain hub.

Currently, China’s blockchain startups are mainly located in Beijing, Shanghai, Shenzhen and Hangzhou. Hangzhou, home to Alibaba’s Ant Financial and Wanxiang Blockchain Labs, is second only to Beijing in terms of the number and scale of blockchain enterprises. And it has become has become the first city in China to include the technology of blockchain into its government work report this year. Undoubtedly, the city is a growing center for blockchain development.

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