Authorities in Beijing say they have launched a blockchain-powered loans platform that will help small and medium-sized companies affected by the coronavirus to borrow money and potentially stay afloat – as the disease threatens to batter the city’s industrial sector.
The city’s government launched the platform as part of new emergency measures, per a February 9 report from media outlet the People’s Daily.
SMEs have been among those hit hardest by the virus, with the government extending the Lunar New Year holidays in an effort to limit its spread. Although many companies have reopened for business today, a large number of firms in the city are only partially open, with many staff members working from home.
SME productivity in the capital has been severely hampered and could worsen if staff and partner companies do not resume business as usual in the coming days.
The media outlet says the blockchain-powered platform will allow small, medium and micro enterprises to obtain loans from government agencies, as well as three participating banks.
The authorities have also spoken about “aggressively promoting” blockchain-powered debt management platforms as the virus continues to disrupt lives and business in the capital, with state-owned research institutes and other local governments also getting involved.
The platform offers services including insurance guaranteeing, investment assistance and emergency loans.
The authorities state that using blockchain technology will help boost transparency, prevent false rights issuances and ensure all parties stay abreast of one another’s’ financial statuses.