According to an article by Nikkei Asian Review, Alibaba Group Holding has filed more than 10% of the 406 world’s patent applications related to blockchain in 2017. Many have said that the Alibaba Group is spearheading the development of blockchain and cryptocurrency. Other companies in China such as Tencent Holdings and Baidu have also been actively filing for blockchain related patents.
It seems that Chinese companies are keen on harnessing the use of blockchain which includes using the blockchain to authenticate brands and products. According to data collated by Thomson Reuters, 56% of the world’s 406 blockchain-related patent applications in 2017 were made by Chinese companies. To add 22% of blockchain patents were from the U.S. The U.S. has The U.S. still has the largest number of cumulative applications, but on judging on an annual basis as a criterion, China has the lead.
“Blockchain is a new technological landscape where it could be very profitable for Chinese companies to grab significant territory in their patent claim language,” said Taiwan-based John Eastwood, a partner at Eiger Law who specializes in intellectual property and technology. “Holding several patents helps to give an aura of legitimacy that helps many companies in the blockchain field to attract investors or acquirers.”
Last week, Ant Financial and Alipay announced that they have parternet with the municipal government in Wuchang, in northeastern Heilongjiang Province, to use blockchain technology to ensure the authenticity of rice produced there. The Alibaba group alone has filed about 43 blockchain related patents in 2017 while Tecent has filed bout 11.
Alibaba’s found Jack Ma said at the launch of the company’s blockchain-based remittance service in Hong Kong in June that “”Blockchain technology can help overcome the challenges of security, sustainability and inclusion,” and firmly believes that blockchain technology has the power to change the world more than people can imagine.
Interestingly, despite the bans and crackdowns on crypto-related actitives, Chinese companies such as Alibaba, Tencent and Baidu are still working on research and development of blockchain technologies. Perhaps in time, the Chinese government will be more relaxed in regard with the bans and that will allow crypto-related companies to flourish again.
Source: Nikkei Asian Review
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