The Chinese authorities continue to tighten their policy policy in respect to the cryptocurrency industry. After the complete ban of Bitcoin (BTC) and other digital assets, the regulator turned to non-fungible tokens (NFT).
Recently, the Chinese authorities have introduced a ban on trading NFTs for profit. By equating NFTs to collectables, the authorities have effectively prohibited NFT trading as a decentralised business. Furthermore, regulators have spoken to big-name internet companies.
“Chinese regulatory authorities are strengthening the supervision of NFTs and have interviewed major Internet companies. NFTs are no longer allowed to be used, but instead are digital collectibles,” tweeted Chinese Journalist Colin Wu.
However, the NFT industry in China continues to resist. Several global commercial players, such as McDonald’s, are entering the NFT market, ignoring pressure from the Chinese authorities.
McDonald’s China, a subsidiary of the American multinational fast-food giant, has announced the release of their first NFT called “Big Mac Cube”, which presents one of the most popular sandwiches of a fast-food restaurant in an NFT form. McDonald’s China will release a set of 188 NFTs as limited-edition gifts for its employees and customers to celebrate the 31st anniversary since it entered the Chinese market. McDonald’s China is also officially opening its new headquarters in Shanghai. The design of the building is inspired by the NFT artworks.
“McDonald’s China’s new headquarters building is a brand-new development of McDonald’s China. Milestones. At this special moment, we use the form of NFT to share McDonald’s innovation, digitalisation, and trend art with employees and consumers,” states the fast-food giant.
China CITIC Group, a state-owned investment company, holds the controlling stake. McDonald’s is expected to promote the digital currency of the Central Bank of China (CBDC) by introducing digital yuan as a payment option in fast food chains. The Chinese government intends to clear Chinese territory from cryptocurrencies and replace them with a centralised digital yuan.
In December 2020, the People’s Bank of China announced that CBDC was ready for pilot tests and in four months McDonald’s China participated in the digital yuan testing.
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