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Chinese City Eyes Blockchain Applications for Urban Governance and Smart Education

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Chengdu, the capital city of China’s Sichuan province, seeks to form a blockchain application to revolutionize cross-border trade, urban governance, smart manufacturing, government services, smart education, financial services, smart healthcare, and smart agriculture by 2022.

Creating 30 typical blockchain application scenarios

This information was disclosed during the city’s international blockchain industry expo dubbed the 2020 Chengdu Global Innovation and Entrepreneurship Fair.

As per the announcement, the city intends to:

“Create 30 typical blockchain application scenarios, form 2-3 blockchain industry cluster development areas , and build Chengdu into a pioneering area for blockchain technology innovation and a demonstration area for blockchain industry innovation and development.”

People are continually becoming keen on what they eat or drink. As a result, conscious consumerism has been rising, and Chengdu wants to create new consumption scenarios by availing product traceability using blockchain.

Revamping urban management

Many cities have had to grapple with the congestion challenge. Chengdu seeks to address this issue using blockchain technology through scientific congestion control and urban management.

This will be attained by using blockchain-powered data sharing and business collaboration. Furthermore, this cutting-edge technology will offer a single network unified management platform, instrumental in risk prevention and control.

Chengdu intends to promote smart education scenarios like a teacher-student credit system founded on blockchain technology. The announcement noted:

“Build and make good use of the Chengdu smart education cloud platform, create a full-scale Chengdu full-cycle education data center, and promote blockchain technology in smart education governance, education and teaching reforms, and comprehensive quality records.”

China is continually deploying blockchain-enabled solutions. For example, Hainan, a southern island province of China, gave indications of launching a blockchain-enabled points reward program to promote tourism in the region. It saw the blockchain-based system as a game-changer in getting back on track in the tourism sector following disrupted travel triggered by the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. 

Image source: Shutterstock Source: https://Blockchain.News/news/chinese-city-chengdu-blockchain-applications-urban-governance-smart-education

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Active Bitcoin Addresses Hit Third-Highest Level in November

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Bitcoin (BTC) bulls have been continuously trying reach the $20,000 price, falling just shy of what would have been a new ATH price by getting to $19,832 in the past 24 hours. Bitcoin has since nosedived and recovered to $19,268 at press time.

At the time of the Bitcoin price rally, the number of active BTC addresses was at its third-highest level, according to on-chain metrics platform Glassnode. The blockchain data provider noted:

“Almost 19.6 million Bitcoin addresses were active in November sending or receiving BTC. That is the third-highest value in Bitcoin’s history – only topped in December 2017 and January 2018.”

The rollercoaster ride experienced by Bitcoin price in November made BTC addresses either sending or receiving BTC to hit nearly 19.6 million, making the on-chain transaction volume to rise by 47%.

The number of active Bitcoin addresses broke the record in December 2017 by surging to 21.64 million, followed by January 2018, where they rose to 19.67 million, meaning that these numbers have not been seen in the recent past. November 2020, therefore, serves as a reminder of the notable levels the leading cryptocurrency can go.

The high number of active BTC addresses correlates with the fact that Bitcoin withdrawals from crypto exchanges surged to a 17-month high in November at 2,288.125. These record-breaking withdrawals were linked to investors either cashing in their profits after the BTC price hit a new all-time high of more than $19,800 on Nov 30 or others holding in cold storage wallets.

The near-record highs of active BTC addresses in November could prove to be a trigger of what awaits the leading cryptocurrency. For instance, an on-chain analyst who previously predicted the Bitcoin and stock market decoupling, Willy Woo, recently revealed a new model suggesting BTC will reach $200,000 by the end of 2021 at least, if not $300,000.

He expounded that the current re-accumulation phase coincides with the spot market inventory depletion, and is roughly two times longer and deeper than the last cycle, which could lead to Bitcoin’s price climbing higher. 

Image source: Shutterstock Source: https://Blockchain.News/news/active-bitcoin-addresses-hit-third-highest-level-in-november

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OKEx Announces Support for Spark (FLR) Airdrop as XRP Holders Prepare for Token Distribution

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OKEx has joined other digital asset exchanges in announcing support for the upcoming Spark (FLR) token airdrop.

Businessmen anticipating crypto giveaway

Along with other crypto exchanges, OKEx will enable XRP holders leveraging their services to benefit from the Spark Airdrop Program. It is the latest trading platform to have joined, as a growing number of leading exchanges such as Binance, Bithumb, Bitstamp, Poloniex, KuCoin, and more have said that the cryptocurrency distribution would be made available to their XRP holders. Per OKEx’s official Twitter announcement:

“$XRP Deposits and Withdrawals will be suspended from 12:00 pm UTC Dec 11; Snapshot of users’ $XRP tokens at 12:00am UTC Dec 12. After the snapshot, Deposits and Withdrawals will resume.”

How will Spark Airdrop Program work?

December 12 is announced as the official date where Spark will be airdropped, but it will actually be the first step in Flare Networks’ initiative to distribute FLR tokens to XRP holders. On December 12, at 12:00 am UTC, a “snapshot” of XRP holders’ total amount of XRP will be taken by Flare Networks. Traders and investors who hold Ripple’s native digital currency will be able to receive Spark tokens for free on a 1:1 ratio.

The total amount of tokens to be distributed under the Spark Airdrop Program will be approximately 45 billion, made available to all XRP holders except for Ripple Labs. The upcoming release of tokens is said to have triggered an upward price movement for XRP.

Flare Networks, the Ripple-backed smart contract utility fork, will then take into account XRP held on participating wallets and crypto exchanges. An actual distribution day for their native tokens is not known, although it is anticipated for some time between March and May 2021.

It is also recommended that all XRP deposits be locked into the compatible exchanges and wallets before December 11, as most crypto exchanges will temporarily pause withdrawal and deposits of XRP on their platforms.

The easiest way to benefit from the airdrop is to deposit XRP into a crypto exchange that supports the snapshot. Another way to gain free Spark tokens is to hold XRP in compatible digital wallets, although there may be additional steps for users to take before being able to claim their free tokens. Users also have the choice to file a self-custody claim of XRP, although this may not be the easiest way of participating in the token distribution.

Many exchanges have announced their support for the upcoming airdrop. However, Binance.US and Coinbase XRP holders will not be able to benefit from it. A crypto enthusiast retweeted by Flare Networks said:

“At this point in time, pretty much every major exchange minus @coinbase is supporting the @FlareNetworks airdrop.”

Coinbase had previously omitted to confirm their participation in the Spark token distribution and was called out by Flare Networks, as the US-based crypto exchange held about 3 billion XRP on their platform.

Currently, XRP token tracker announced via Twitter that funds for XRP were increasingly being deposited into exchanges supporting the Spark airdrop. Per the Tweet:

“We’ve noticed a lot of $XRP action on the exchanges that will be supporting the airdrop including: @binance, @bitfinex, @Bitstamp and more.” 

Image source: Shutterstock Source: https://Blockchain.News/news/okex-announces-support-spark-flr-airdrop-xrp-holders-prepare-token-distribution

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SushiSwap (SUSHI) Token Price Surges Over 15% After Merger with Yearn.finance

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Decentralized finance SushiSwap’s native token SUSHI has surged over 15 percent in the past 24 hours, while Bitcoin and other large cap altcoins are in a sea of red. SushiSwap’s SUSHI token has become the best performing asset in the past 24 hours, and the DeFi token has been able to climb nearly 60 percent in a week.

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While Bitcoin has attempted to surpass the $20,000 resistance level while hitting its all-time high, selling pressure quickly accumulated and the digital asset dropped 7 percent. 

After the founder of Yearn.finance, Andre Cronje revealed that SushiSwap would be merged with the team of Yearn.finance, the SUSHI token quickly rose. Cronje announced the merger, saying:

“As Sushi focused on expanding their AMM ecosystem, and as Yearn focused on expanding their strategies, more and more overlap became apparent, Yearn needed custom AMM experiences for their strategies, and Sushi started pushing the boundaries of yield and money markets.”

The decentralized finance (DeFi) industry has also seen a boom lately, with over $14.4 billion in cryptocurrencies locked. MakerDAO continues to be in the lead with the most cryptocurrencies locked, almost reaching $3 billion, after SushiSwap’s original blockchain before its fork, Uniswap recently lost most of its dominance in the ecosystem.

SushiSwap currently has over $790 million in total value locked and is currently trading at $2.25 per token. SushiSwap is also expected to roll out new products in the future, which would enable it to differentiate itself from other automated market makers (AMM) in the DeFi ecosystem. 

The last time SushiSwap’s SUSHI token price surged was when Uniswap’s rewards ended. SushiSwap’s TVL climbed over 150 percent the day Uniswap’s rewards ended and has reached above $1 billion. Bancor, another decentralized exchange has released a liquidity mining program, which includes retroactive rewards on Nov. 17.

Image source: Shutterstock Source: https://Blockchain.News/news/sushiswap-sushi-token-price-surges-15-after-merger-yearn-finance

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BlackRock CEO Larry Fink Says Bitcoin Can Evolve Into Global Asset and Impact Dollar

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Larry Fink, the head of the world’s largest asset manager BlackRock sees the potential for Bitcoin and cryptocurrency sector to evolve into a mainstream marketplace. He also noted the impact BTC is having on dollar-based assets internationally.

Bitcoin, Larry Fink, BlackRock, Global Asset, Evolve

BlackRock CEO Larry Fink has given a relatively understated endorsement of Bitcoin in a report by CNBC on Dec. 1.

Fink said:

“Bitcoin has caught the attention and the imagination of many people. Still untested, pretty small market relative to other markets.”

Although the Blackrock CEO recognizes that BTC is “seeing big giant moves every day,” Fink maintained it’s a “thin market,” but did not rule out Bitcoin’s potential growth.

While speaking at the Council on Foreign Relations on Dec 1, Fink said:

“Can it (BTC) evolve into a global market? Possibly.”

Fink also noted in the CNBC report that having a digital currency like Bitcoin has a real impact on the US dollar—making it less relevant to international holders of dollar-based assets.

The Blackrock CEO further raised the question that many economists have been pondering in regard to Bitcoin:

“Does it change the need for the dollar as a reserve currency?”

BlackRock holds over $7.4 trillion in assets under management making it the world’s largest asset manager. While Fink’s comments were not overly bullish, the comments are still a positive development for the still-nascent cryptocurrency market and its pioneer Bitcoin. The CEO’s comments also indicate that BlackRock is watching the crypto space very closely.

Notably, institutional adoption is currently driving bullish sentiment in the Bitcoin and crypto space along with major players who have publicly announced major allocations of their portfolios to Bitcoin—such as billionaire hedge fund managers Stanley Druckenmiller and Paul Tudor Jones II and MicroStrategy’s Michael Saylor.

Image source: Shutterstock Source: https://Blockchain.News/news/blackrock-ceo-larry-fink-says-bitcoin-can-evolve-into-global-asset-and-impact-dollar

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