Bank of China Tower Hong Kong

Bank of China is reportedly making plans to implement cryptocurrency XRP, developed by FinTech firm Ripple, for international payments.

The state-owned bank is of China’s “Big Four” state-owned commercial banks and fifth largest in the world by total assets and if implemented, the unconfirmed plans would signal strong support for regulated cryptocurrency management in the country.

Late last year, Ripple announced that it had hosted delegates from state-run central bank People’s Bank of China (PBoC) on a research delegation to discuss the “significant” cryptocurrency issue.

“Welcomed China’s central bank, industry & academic leaders to #Ripple HQ to discuss the latest #blockchain trends,” Ripple tweeted at the time.

China’s financial institutions have to date been notoriously wary of unregulated cryptocurrency and the government has previously issued a series of crackdowns on exchanges and flirted with banning bitcoin outright.

Ripple’s XRP currency is one of a raft of new cryptocurrencies designed to give greater oversight for regulators through Ripple’s efforts to meet with policy-makers. XRP allows banks to transact directly and instantly globally, benefiting cross-border payments. Today most such payments are processed through a chain of banks with each intermediary representing a potential point of delay, failure and cost.

“By using a digital asset like XRP that settles in three seconds or less, our clients can move money as quickly as information… Ripple is focused on fixing the inefficiencies and problems that exist in cross-border payments, regardless of whether those payments originate with a bank, corporate or another financial institution,” Brad Garlinghouse, CEO of Ripple, said.

The rumours follow news that representatives of Chinese central bank launched a US research delegation late last year to meet Ripple management directly to discuss the latest virtual currency trends and issues.

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