Seoul, considered the most innovative city in the world, is also one of the most active in terms of widespread crypto adoption. Photo: iStock
Seoul, considered the most innovative city in the world, is also one of the most active in terms of widespread crypto adoption. Photo: iStock

South Korean crypto regulation becomes mainstream political issue: A new report says South Koreans accounts for 30% of total cryptocurrency trading worldwide and that 30% of all adults in the country have traded digital coins. The report, produced by “predictive analytics” company Cindicator, also says crypto regulation has become a mainstream political issue in the country. South Korea, which was ranked the most innovative country in the world by Bloomberg this year, now sees “pro-blockchain and cryptocurrency proposals” regularly used in mainstream elections to attract voters. It says the country is at the “center of global blockchain development”.

China’s blockchain focus now on three main cities: According to local media reports, Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou will form the focus of China’s new blockchain legislation. The wisdom of China’s national policy, which has focused on making the country a global blockchain leader while at the same time taking a prohibitive approach to cryptocurrency and mining, has provoked questions and a Forbes report this month suggests that local investors are “losing faith” in blockchain. This three-city focus would seem to be an attempt to reignite the sector.

Blockchain helping Taiwanese farmers: Distributed ledger is helping Taiwan’s rice farmers mitigate the effects of climate change, according to a Financial Times report. In Chihshang, in eastern Taiwan, farmers are reportedly increasingly turning to organic methods and are using blockchain and the Internet of Things to link information about their harvest to the web to record weather patterns and chemical changes in their soil.

Abu Dhabi oil giant in blockchain partnership with IBM: The Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) has partnered with IBM to track, validate and execute transactions in oil and gas production using blockchain. The project aims to reduce transaction times between operating companies, to increase efficiency and to improve production data reliability. The oil and gas industry is seeing increasingly widespread use of blockchain.

Mastercard files two blockchain patents: 
Mastercard has filed a United States patent for a method to “anonymize transactions” using blockchain. The move follows a number of high-profile privacy-focused altcoins such as Zcash (ZEC) and Monero (XMR) and, although it goes against a tightened US regulatory environment, it sees Mastercard becoming more proactive in the crypto space. The payment and credit card conglomerate also recently logged another patent request, for a solution that would use a “fractional reserve of blockchain currency” to speed up cryptocurrency transactions.