China is preparing to launch its first state-backed non-fungible token (NFT) marketplace as it continues to embrace blockchain technology, according to media reports.Dubbed the ‘China Digital Asset Trading Platform’, the NFT platform will be launched in Beijing on January 1, 2023. The platform will be a secondary market allowing users to trade digital copyrights, property rights, and collectibles.It will reportedly be run by the state-owned China Technology Exchange in collaboration with the government-backed Art Exhibitions China and a private company, Huban Digital Copyrights.The platform’s underlying blockchain is called ‘China Cultural Protection Chain’, according to the reports.Despite being crypto-skeptic, China was one of the first nations to embrace the NFT industry. In 2021, Beijing banned all crypto transactions, urging citizens to “stay away” from them. As a result, NFTs (digital collectibles in China) have become extremely popular in the country.READ MORE: China highlights metaverse risksIn November, the Hangzhou Internet Court of China ruled that NFTs are virtual property protected by law because they share “the object characteristics of property rights such as value, scarcity, controllability, and tradability.”This article was originally published by RT.Russia allows gas debt payments in foreign currenciesAn earlier presidential decree obliged ‘unfriendly’ countries to pay for natural gas in rublesRussian President Vladimir Putin signed a decree on Friday allowing “unfriendly” Western countries that have placed sanctions on Russia to pay their debts for natural gas supplies in foreign currencies instead of rubles. The decree was published on the government’s official portal for legal information.The new document amends a presidential decree from March, which required all payments for Russian gas to be made in Russian currency. At the time, President Putin said foreign governments were using their currencies “as weapons,” meaning Russia should not use them in settlements. The March decree came shortly after Western states introduced sanctions against Russia over its military operation in Ukraine. The restrictions made it nearly impossible for Russia to carry out transactions in euros and dollars.The reaction to converting gas payments to rubles was initially varied, with some arguing that the scheme could not be considered legal as there is no provision for changing the currency of payment in gas contracts. Several countries, including Poland and Bulgaria, said they would not agree to the scheme, and were cut off from Russian supplies. However, many Western companies ended up accepting the Russian terms.The list of countries which Russia considers “unfriendly” includes the 27 states of the EU, the US, UK, Canada, Australia, South Korea, Japan, Ukraine and others, comprising around 50 nations in total.
This article was originally published by RT