China’s largest technology groups have pledged to help stamp out trading in non-fungible tokens (NFTs), as part of Beijing’s crackdown on the digital asset sector.
Tencent Holdings, Ant Group, Baidu and JD.com are among signatories to a pact to stop secondary trading in NFTs and other digital collectibles.
The companies were among 30 firms and institutes that have agreed to the “Digital Collectible Industry Self-Discipline Development Initiative”, according to a report by the Shanghai Securities News.
The newspaper said the initiative was led by the Chinese Cultural Industry Association.
NFTs have become widely popular across the globe in recent years, in large part thanks to an active if not highly speculative secondary market.
China Blockchain Security
China does not have clear rules around NFTs, but often stamps out speculation of any kind on the grounds of financial stability. China’s crypto crackdown, for instance, means trading in digital currencies is banned.
Still, many Chinese companies have been actively experimenting with digital collectible products in recent months, with Tencent and Ant opening their own online marketplaces. However, in June, WeChat banned secondary NFT trades.
The official Xinhua news agency also issued a collection last December. Chinese residents can only buy NFTs using the Chinese yuan.
The self-regulation pact the firms signed on Thursday contains a total of 14 articles. Besides a ban on secondary trading, the signatories are asked to implement real-name authentication when selling digital collectibles to users.
The pact also asks platforms to ensure China blockchain technologies are “secure and controllable” and sufficiently protect users’ personal information.
Tencent, Ant, Baidu and JD.com and the Chinese Cultural Industry Association did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
- Reuters, with additional editing by George Russell