When it comes to blockchain patents, China is undoubtedly the king of the mountain, now boasting over 50 percent of filings over the past year.
Reports coming out of Tokyo via the Nikkei Asian Review claims that Alibaba Group Holdings has filed more than 10 percent of the worlds blockchain patents alone, which spearheads indicators that China is taking blockchain technology very seriously and has the ambition to dominate the technology beyond its use in cryptocurrencies.
United States a distant second
According to data collected by Thomson Reuters, Chinese companies now hold applications for 56 percent of worldwide blockchain patents, with the United States coming in at a distant second with 22 percent of applications.
It should be noted that the US still has the largest number of cumulative applications at the moment, but China is leading the pack on an annual basis.
John Eastwood, a partner at Eiger Law, who specializes in intellectual property and technology, commented when addressing the rise in blockchain patents that “Blockchain is a new technological landscape where it could be very profitable for Chinese companies to grab significant territory in their patent claim language.”
“Holding several patents helps to give an aura of legitimacy that helps many companies in the blockchain field to attract investors or acquirers.”
Ant Financial and Alipay, Alibaba’s payment subsidiary, announced a partnership with the municipal government in Wuchang, northeastern Heilongjiang Province last week that will see the use of blockchain to authenticate rice produced in the area.
From September 30 every packet of Wuchang rice being sold at a flagship store on Alibaba’s Tmall platform will come with a QR code.
When scanned using the Alipay app customers will be able to access information that includes where the rice was harvested, and the type of seed used.
This new system is also believed to cut down on delivery time.
Fighting counterfeit produce
Wuchang is an area well-known for the quality of its rice, but there has been a lot of counterfeit versions that have come into the market of late, affecting the livelihoods of the farmers who produce the rice, and the credibility of the local government.
Speaking at the launch of the companies blockchain-based remittance service in Hong Kong in June, Alibaba founder Jack Ma said: “blockchain technology can help overcome the challenges of security, sustainability, and inclusion.”
“It could change our world more than people can imagine.”
Although China has currently banned cryptocurrency deals, companies such as Alibaba have been expanding their blockchain-related businesses with the use of blockchain patents, which has placed China firmly as a global leader in this field.
Lover of all things crypto, blockchain and AI, professional tech scribe & part of the editorial team at Crypto Disrupt.