People’s Republic of China (PRC) 中华人民共和国 was one of the first governments to ban bitcoin, cryptocurrency. Now, the PRC is the first country to come out with official government crypto rankings. Its China Center for Information Industry Development (CCID) used three filters through which coins would be judged: innovation, technology, application. Rather surprisingly to some enthusiasts, bitcoin core (BTC) didn’t even crack the top ten, while bitcoin cash (BCH) almost didn’t make the list at all.
China Lists Ethereum as Best in Crypto Class
In what is either widely being referred to as a case of communist schizophrenia or a passive nod to the inevitable financial future, the PRC’s CCID released its first set of cryptocurrency rankings. China, of course, outright banned crypto in all its various forms, and the broader market was thought to have plummeted for a time as a result. That it is now publishing coin rankings is confusing to many observers.
CN Ledger, a popular Twitter handle, was the first to expose the rankings to the outside world. Its author, Eric Zhao, explained how “most old-school experts haven’t followed the crypto space long enough to grasp some of the traits of tech and community that can’t be found elsewhere.”
Indeed, this year found Weiss Ratings’ inaugural list of their rankings, as these pages reported. It too was very controversial. “The eagerly-anticipated report rates 74 of the most popular cryptocurrencies on the market, scoring them from A to D,” we wrote. “Such was the level of interest in the report, the company’s website was knocked offline as interest peaked on Wednesday morning. Weiss Ratings include some controversial scores for currencies such as bitcoin and ethereum that are sure to spark debate.” Then, as now, BTC ranked lower than Ethereum. Weiss spent a great deal of time defending their decision.
Mr. Zhao hoped the CCID effort signals a kind of new opening. “I believe at least it’s a sign that the officials are starting to treat crypto projects more like a neutral endeavour towards better technology and innovations, rather than just challenging the power and authority of banks and government,” he stressed.
BTC Listed 13 of 28
Just a week ago, the PRC ministry surprised enthusiasts with a press release announcing its Global Public Chain Assessment Index. “This independent analysis of cryptocurrencies and global public blockchain technology demonstrates the confidence of the Chinese Government in the technology, and will act as a guide for government, enterprise and research institute,” news.Bitcoin.com quoted the government notice as stating.
The Center for Information Industry Development used three main criteria in scoring cryptocurrencies, though scant information exists about methodology. Application, innovation, technology were used to place 28 total cryptos and their respective blockchains (which the rankings, at least at first glance, weigh heavily).
Of the top four coins by market capitalization, Ethereum ranked first, followed by bitcoin core (BTC) at number 13, ripple in the 17th spot, and bitcoin cash (BCH) lagging well behind them all at the lowly number 25 of 28. For the CCID, however, the top five cryptos to their liking include ether, steem, lisk, neo, komodo.
For those who worry about such rankings, PRC appears to, again, value blockchains over currencies – a common refrain heard in the Western corporate world. If, alternatively, one were to assess various cryptocurrencies according to their efficacy as mediums of exchange, BCH and BTC would likely rank quite high, and could be considered a most obvious threat to a regime bent on control. Whatever the case, cracks do happen inside the communist stronghold: quite a few crypto tech related patents are owned by China, its central bank has openly mused about state-backed crypto, and, of course, its burgeoning video game industry is very bullish on tokens and distributed ledgers. And just announced, “The most popular stock trading app in China, Straight Flush (同花顺), now adds support for showing the price of Crypto-Currencies.”