The People’s Bank of China, the nation’s central bank, has a new governor, its first in 15 years. His name is Yi Gang and judging by previous comments the 60-year-old has made, he’s perfectly okay with cryptocurrency. His positive stance towards bitcoin and other cryptos bodes well for their future within China.
On March 19, China’s National People’s Congress voted to approve President Jinping’s nominee to oversee the People’s Bank of China (PBoC). The appointment was not a surprise, for Yi Gang was already serving as deputy governor. The Beijing-born official is believed to have taken up his position with immediate effect. Zhou Xiaochuan, who stepped down from the role, was widely seen as a liberal governor, and it’s likely that Yi will continue where his predecessor left off.
Yi Gang has previously spoken positively about bitcoin, going so far as to call it “inspiring” or “enlightening” in an address made in 2013. He appears to have been happy for Chinese citizens to engage in the buying and selling of bitcoin online, regarding it as a distinctly separate activity from trading currency. When speaking to the G20 summit in 2016, Yi also spoke positively of blockchain technology.
“It seems that the incoming governor Yi Gang is more crypto progressive,” noted Youtuber “Boxmining”, giving his thoughts on the appointment. As governor of the world’s largest central bank based on asset holdings, Yi is sure to be careful about how he chooses his words from now on. A ringing endorsement of cryptocurrency is unlikely. Even a laissez-faire approach that enabled bitcoiners to ply their trade without government intervention would herald good news for China and for the global crypto economy.