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Our Man in Shanghai: Filecoin city talk, Polkadot and NFTs grab attention

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The Filecoin distributed storage network project is the talk of the city as FIL was the most traded token on Huobi, OKEx and Gate on Thursday. These three exchanges have a predominantly Chinese user base and account for a large portion of Level 1 trading volume for major pairs. On Thursday afternoon, Huobi’s trading volumes on FIL were more than three times that of BTC as the price hit a 170% increase over 7 days.

Filecoin has managed to capture the attention of Chinese investors, including large investment groups such as Fenbushi Capital, SNZ Capital, and Neo’s EcoFund. The three were part of a group that backed the $ 23 million Filecoin Ecosystem Fund, announced on March 25. The Filecoin Ecosystem Fund is intended to support projects and help develop the network. It could also give donors quick access to new projects, which is a lucrative model for VCs in an increasingly crowded investment space. It remains to be seen which of these two consequences constitutes a major priority for the funds concerned.

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On March 28, OKEx produced a video explaining the concepts behind Filecoin, which received around 600 shares and 3,400 likes on Weibo. This shows a high level of attention from the Chinese retail public, a demographic that is difficult to obtain and difficult to maintain over longer periods of time.

NFT in Beijing, Polkadot in Hangzhou

Beijing-based BlockCreateArt hosted a major NFT art exhibition on March 26, supported by auction house Christie’s, digital finance group and mining rig producer Bitmain. Interest in digital art has grown at some levels in China, but cultural and artistic differences have led to a more pragmatic approach towards leading digital artists such as Beeple. The exhibition will stop in Shanghai in early April.

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Hangzhou housed the Open days blockchain exhibition sponsored by Candaq Fintech Group. The event had a room dedicated to Polkadot projects, with speakers from Rarelink, Litenty and Phala, among others. Upcoming parachain auctions have become a topic of interest with so many local and region-related projects being built on Polkadot.

Central bank director says digital yuan is catching up

The head of the People’s Bank of China Digital Currency Research Institute acknowledged that private payment processors Alipay and WeChat Pay occupy a dominant position in the Chinese payments space. In an appearance at the panel, Wang Changchun noted that the government-backed digital currency would be needed to maintain stability if something goes wrong with existing solutions. At the moment, WeChat Pay and Alipay don’t appear to be in imminent danger of losing market share, but that could change quickly if government incentives are put in place for those who wish to convert.

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In business news, electric vehicle brand IM Motors, in collaboration with SAIC Motor and Alibaba, announced a blockchain-powered service network that would entice customers to share data with the company. In order to achieve a certain level of traceability and resistance to tampering, points on the chain would be awarded to customers using the vehicle and associated applications.

The blockchain network has been advertised as exclusive and private, so if it represents a slight standardization of blockchain technology, it will likely have a lot in common with more centralized storage networks.

This weekly roundup of news from Mainland China, Taiwan and Hong Kong attempts to deal with the most important news in the industry, including influential projects, changes in the regulatory landscape and blockchain integrations from company.

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