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China has selected 15 pilot areas and identified several application areas to “realize the innovative application of blockchain technology,” according to a joint government statement on Sunday.

The pilot areas include areas in the major Chinese cities of Beijing and Shanghai, as well as Guangzhou and Chengdu in the southern provinces of Guangdong and Sichuan respectively, according to a statement posted on the Cyberspace Administration’s official Wechat social media account.

Besides the pilot areas, 164 entities, including hospitals, universities and companies such as SAIC-GM-Wuling Automobile Co., China National Offshore Oil Corp, Beijing Gas Group Co. and Industrial and Commercial Bank of China Ltd. have been selected to carry out blockchain pilot projects.

The entities will drive projects in areas such as manufacturing, energy, government and tax services, law, education, healthcare, trade and finance, and cross-border finance.

“Each region’s cyberspace administration and relevant industry regulator should… Give full play to the role of blockchain in promoting data sharing, optimizing business processes, reducing the cost of operating and improving the effectiveness of collaboration in building a credible system,” the statement said.

In October 2019, Chinese President Xi Jinping said the country should accelerate the development of blockchain technology as a core of innovation.

Although China promotes blockchain technology, it has banned bitcoin, which is based on this technology.

In September, regulators clamped down on cryptocurrencies with a blanket ban on all crypto transactions and mining.

The statement was issued jointly by 16 government agencies, including the Ministry of Education, Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, the central bank, National Energy Administration and China Energy Commission. securities regulation, according to the Cyberspace Administration statement.

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