On July 31, Shanghai, China’s biggest city, released a strategy aimed at advancing the growth of its urban blockchain digital infrastructure system between 2023 and 2025. 

The strategy aims to speed up the city’s digital transformation and better integrate blockchain technology across various industries, including finance, government, and urban governance.

Pujiang Digital Chain Plan

As per the plan published on Shanghai’s official government website, Pujiang Digital Chain, located within the city’s municipal boundaries, is set to become fully operational by 2025. It will play a crucial role in supporting and unifying the city’s government affairs, public services, and industrial sectors.

Upon implementation, the chain will encompass data identification, digital payment, and supervision functionalities, primarily safeguarding the city’s data infrastructure and enabling widespread adoption of blockchain applications. 

Additionally, the strategy calls for strengthening regional trade and agricultural product traceability and adding public data to the blockchain.

Pujiang Digital Chain also seeks to achieve the integration of the Yangtze River Delta (YRD) that is a region composed of 26 additional cities located centrally around Shanghai. In 2018, this economic powerhouse contributed 20% of China’s GDP and 39% of all foreign direct investment inflows.

Yangtze River Delta around Shanghai
Yangtze River Delta

Advancing Shanghai’s Status as a Tech Hub

The plan also encompasses establishing five new research and development institutions in the city. These innovation centers will be dedicated to scientific and technological advancements, and they will attract highly skilled professionals.

This initiative is a substantial and determined step forward for a city that takes pride in its status as a tech hub. However, it is important to recognize that some hardline CCP sections have a history of antagonizing particular forms of innovation and more general concerns around human rights and economic liberties.

China: A Very Active Country in the Tech World 

Shanghai’s strategy exemplifies China’s strong resolve to establish itself as a pioneer in technological innovation and economic dominance worldwide. The successful introduction of its central bank digital currency, e-yuan, reinforces its leading position in the digital currency arena.

China’s ambitious technological aspirations and proactive approach to blockchain development go beyond merely advancing technology. The country represents a strategic shift in geopolitics and global rivalry that can alter the balance of power on a global scale.

As previously reported by NFT Horizon, Nanjing, the provincial capital of Jiangsu in eastern China, established the China Metaverse Technology and Application Innovation Platform in May to advance metaverse study and development throughout the nation.

During this period, Zhengzhou, another Chinese city, unveiled various initiatives to facilitate the activities of metaverse companies operating in the region. Additionally, China mentioned the launch of a blockchain research center in Beijing.