In what is a sign of optimism about the digital currency’s prospects, hundreds of bitcoin devotees thronged the first Global Bitcoin Summit in China, which was held in Beijing, despite the ongoing government crackdown on the currency.
However, Li Xiaolai, a venture capitalist and the conference’s organizer, brushed away any suggestions that People’s Bank of China may ultimately ban the use of virtual currencies in future.
“Thailand has already banned bitcoin, so has Russia. But who cares if China bans it as long as everyone knows the whole world can’t ban it,” Li added, according to South China Morning Post.
The chiefs of China’s five biggest bitcoin companies skipped the event over fears that their presence may raise the profile of the summit and prompt further crackdown aimed at slowing bitcoin’s growth. PBOC has continuously launched various measures aimed at disrupting the digital currency, such as directing payment firms and banks from handling bitcoin-related transactions.
Nonetheless, Li was happy with the event’s turnout. “I’m glad to have an opportunity to introduce … the environment of bitcoin in China. It is a very stunning innovation,” Li addressed the gathering.
China was the world’s largest bitcoin market before the government crackdown, which saw bitcoin prices plummet from an all-time high of 7,588.88 yuan (about US$1,224) last November, to the current prices of just under $500. Understandably, most Chinese bitcoin users are worried that the government may ban the currency.
So far, over 11 banks have stopped dealing in bitcoin-related transactions, including the four largest lenders-Bank of China, ICBC, Agricultural Bank of China and China Construction Bank. To register for a free 2-week subscription to ForexMinute Premium Plan, visit www.forexminute.com/newsletter.
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