Written by Malik Corbett
Bitcoin continued its role as a safe haven asset overnight as Iran launched a ballistic missile attack on an American base in western Iraq in retaliation for the killing of Iran’s second most powerful person in the country, Maj. Gen. Qasem Soleimani, by the US military last week.
However, as intense as the situation in the Middle East has been over the last few months, Iran nor the United States are in a position to engage in a war at this time. Although, a war could spiral out of control through tit for tat types of aggressive tactics between both countries. However, the Trump administration seems to understand that a full out military conflict with Iran would be a gift to the Chinese and a strategic blunder for the United States. The United States has been in a trade war with China for the past two (2) years and there seems to be no end in sight between the two sides.
Speaking of China
More blockchain news keeps pouring out of the Asian powerhouse. The world’s largest fintech firm, Ant Financial announced it was launching its enterprise blockchain platform in February. The fintech arm of Alibaba, Ant Financial used its blockchain platform to power a record breaking $30 billion in a popular Chinese holiday in November of last year called “Singles Day” according to blockchain publication Decrypt. Decrypt reported that the technology was used for supply-chain tracking, ID verification and supply-chain financing for its clients. The article doesn’t go into the technical aspects of the technology such as what type of blockchain, what consensus algorithm being implemented if any, etc. However the article makes some bold claims such as the platform will be able to support 1 billion daily transactions and will be about to process information across 100,000 per second. If Ant Financial is successful with their blockchain platform, it could totally up-end e-commerce as we know it today.
Alibaba is all in on Blockchain
The breakneck pace of innovation as it relates to blockchain technology coming out of China is impressive. However Alibaba’s big move into the blockchain space is not new. In 2018 Alibaba Cloud, a cloud computing company that competes with AWS, Azure, Google Cloud, etc. launched a global Blockchain as a Service (BaaS) platform which offers enterprises the ability to build blockchain applications. The Alibaba Cloud BaaS supports Hyperledger Fabric and its own Ant Blockchain.
Seems like Every Tech Company Wants to be a Bank
While the world had their eyes glued on Iran Tuesday, the The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) said that they have received 21 applications for its Singapore digital banking license according to the South China Morning Post (SCMP). The SCMP reported that Ant Financial was amongst 21 applicants to file for the license in Singapore. It is clear that China is waging an all out assault on the Western financial system and is looking to lead and dominate a new era of financial innovation and technology and it’s clear they believe blockchain technology is at the heart of the country’s global ambitions.