China Launches its First Blockchain-based Platform for Subway Electronic Invoices
China is one of the global leaders in the blockchain space. According to data released recently by the UN World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO), China filed a whopping 960 patents based on blockchain technology in 2018, highest by any country.
In fact blockchain technology at large has been growing tremendously across the globe. Several types of research and surveys conducted on and for the platform have shown overwhelming results. This has lead to the adoption of technology in various sectors like supply chain management, banking, pharma, publications, finance, etc.
Blockchain technology crossed another milestone recently when Shenzhen issued its first Subway Electronic Invoice based on the blockchain platform, a first in the country. The ticket was issued for a Subway ride at the Futian Station of Shenzhen Metro. The innovative project was developed through a collaboration between the Shenzhen Municipal Taxation Bureau and domestic technology giant Tencent. The tech company provided backup for the platform through its 1 billion users strong social networking platform WeChat.
The innovative platform can revolutionize public transport ticketing if implemented appropriately. This would save precious time while bringing the costs down considerably. The Shenzhen Metro passenger code is displayed on the WeChat Payment voucher page, at the end of each trip. As per reports, the Shenzhen City Blockchain Electronic Invoicing System has issued over one million electronic invoices backed by blockchain, with the total invoices amounting up to C¥1.33 billion ($200 million).
When the electronic invoice platform is fully operational in metro subways, it will expectedly generate over 170,000 self-service invoices each day. Introducing technology in Shenzhen is the first step in implementing blockchain based technology for electronic invoices in public transport across the country. However, Shenzhen Metro is far behind in terms of e-invoicing, like other public transport elements like the taxis, airport buses, and other traffic scenes simultaneously with on-line blockchain electronic invoicing functions.
The news of Tencent and Shenzhen Municipal Taxation Bureau first came to light in December last year, when the two parties announced that they had successfully hooked a blockchain invoice system to WeChat Payment platform.
Blockchain technology has been tested for public transport and logistics extensively. Several E-Commerce companies I am now choosing blockchain as a preferred technology to manage the supply chain. Chinese E-Commerce giant Alibaba has been working on developing blockchain platforms for its websites. More recently the behemoth Chinese Corporation also acquired the Dubai based Alibabacoin.
Emerging markets like India are taking giant strides in this direction. Indian IT stalwart TCS announced its plans to invest heavily in blockchain and provide solutions across the country through its technology centers in Bangalore and Hyderabad. Countries like Russia, Turkey, and Venezuela are also investing hugely in the system. Recently lawmakers from the US state of Colorado announced their plans to implement blockchain in agriculture.
The innovative technology was first introduced in 2009 as a platform for the famous cryptocurrency Bitcoin. Since then, technology has evolved, becoming the hottest topic in the tech world for quite some time. China was amongst the early adopters of blockchain technology, and hence they are arguably the leaders of the distributed ledger system. The country has been able to apply blockchain in the number of sectors. Of late, the country has been facing stiff competition in the market from the US. Blockchain has been applied in the United States in various sectors, almost rewriting the Chinese story.
The global competitor of WeChat messenger, Facebook-owned WhatsApp is set to enter the crypto payment solutions through the social networking sites much-awaited cryptocurrency Facecoin. WhatsApp has about 1.5 billion active users across the globe, which make it an extremely potent platform for cross-border transactions through cryptocurrencies.