In the last couple of days, online news platforms have been rife with updates of Alibaba, the Chinese trading giant, having launched a P2P Node platform that allegedly was to be used for cryptocurrency mining operations.
The story quickly picked up and started trending in various parts of the world, most likely because Alibaba is one of the top e-commerce sites in the world.
One more thing that contributed to this story being so prominent was the fact that China has been practicing very strict behavior towards any entity that associates with cryptocurrency, and Alibaba, being one of the biggest companies to operate from China, was essentially going against the government in such a bold manner.
However, the rumors fell flat when Alibaba officials, no doubt after having seen the global news stories, issued an official statement through Weibo, which described that the company would not launch a cryptocurrency or cryptocurrency mining operations.
That quickly dispelled the rumors and the excitement that had run through the world at seeing that a conglomerate like Alibaba was taking a stance to work for – and not against – cryptocurrency within China.
It is true that the rumor was more exciting because it had been so conflicting in nature as compared to Alibaba’s previous approach to cryptocurrency.
Jack Ma, Alibaba’s founder and executive chairman, had previously stated regarding cryptocurrencies that he knows very little about them. He had further mentioned that he was confused on cryptocurrency operations.
He continued to elaborate that he had his reservations on the cryptocurrency model, explaining that even if the concept of cryptocurrencies somehow works in the future, the international rules and regulations which apply to regular trade and financing transactions will have to be changed entirely.
Add china’s stance to cryptocurrencies to this mix, and you have a “no.”
The aforementioned statement from Jack Ma is as clear as it goes, but if you add China’s recent reactions to it, then it is evident that a corporate entity such as Alibaba would rather not have bad blood between itself and the government only because it wants to start operations with something that the company’s highest official does not believe in.
While the cryptocurrency industry initially flourished from China, the country started taking stern measures against the industry since last year. It began with the banning of initial coin offerings (ICOs) within the country and followed up with strict actions against cryptocurrency exchanges, eventually banning them as well.
The steps above not just throttled but stopped the cryptocurrency trading operations within the country, leaving the local community with minor alternate options to trade and remain connected with cryptocurrencies.
Then, very recently, it was reported that the government is now planning to block access to cryptocurrency trading websites and mobile apps to eradicate cryptocurrency operations. It was also mentioned that the government would clamp down on any cryptocurrency payment platforms, in addition to making efforts to curb the remaining cryptocurrency mining operations within the territory further.
Alibaba will not join the cryptocurrency world anytime soon
Judging from the situation, it does not seem that Alibaba will be going with any cryptocurrency operations anytime shortly. While the rumor had been thrilling, maybe it is time for everyone to start focusing on corporations that actually do value cryptocurrencies – and with that, GMO from Japan comes to mind, that actually did launch its mining operations last year.