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Beijing-based bitcoin trading platform OKCoin has joined the growing list of exchanges to launch trading of Ethereum, the world’s second largest cryptocurrency after Bitcoin.

In an announcement today, OKCoin announced the formal launch of Ethereum (ETH) trading, with deposits and withdrawals for the cryptocurrency officially enabled at 22:00 local time. Ethereum trading will officially launch at midday tomorrow, June 1.

The exchange pointed to an “increasing demand” from users to enable trading of Ethereum (ETH) and Ethereum Classic (ETC), a cryptocurrency that took shape after the DAO hard-fork.

OKCoin wrote in its announcement:

For the past two years, we have been constantly reviewing the viability of listing ETH and ETC based on factors including technical maturity, innovation, market liquidity, and compliance. Today, we are formally launching ETH on the OKCoin exchange.

OKCoin, one of China’s so-called ‘big three’ bitcoin exchanges by trading volumes alongside BTCC and Huobi, joins the latter in launching Ethereum trading. Huobi officially enabled Ethereum trading today after an announcement earlier this week. Huobi’s website shows an ETC ticker with charts, alongside Bitcoin and Litecoin.

The Ethereum ecosystem has seen a number of positive developments since the turn of the year, particularly over the last few months.

Toward the end of February, a 30-member group of giants from a number of industries including the likes of Microsoft, Intel and JPMorgan launched the Enterprise Ethereum Alliance (EEA). As a cross-industry working group, the initiative aims to develop Ethereum-based enterprise blockchain solutions. Last week, the EEA added 86 new members, quickly propelling it to figure among the largest collaborative blockchain consortiums in the world alongside the likes of R3 and Hyperledger.

All the while, Ethereum is seeing an unprecedented boom period, having scaled over 2500% since the year began. Ethereum’s market cap has reached half of that of Bitcoin, the latter which has long been the dominant cryptocurrency across the space.

At the time of publishing, Ethereum is up over 10% on the day, with the price of one ETH token above $230. Ethereum’s market cap is now valued at $21.3 billion.

Get Along, Bitcoin

In referencing most of the above, OKCoin also urged the bitcoin community of miners and developers to take a more unified path toward scaling the bitcoin network. Earlier this month, the network’s efficiency was never lower, with over 200,000 unconfirmed transactions.

An excerpt from OK’s statement read:

[W]e implore BTC Core developers and relevant Miners to work together and resolve any outstanding technical issues, activate SegWit, and solve BTC’s scaling issues.

The entirety of OKCoin’s plea is as shown below:

OKCoin has enabled Ethereum trading for both Chinese and international users, on OKCoin.cn and OKCoin.com

Ethereum founder Vitalik Buterin, who speaks Mandarin, has been encouraging Chinese developers of and companies to utilize the Ethereum protocol toward decentralized applications in recent times, as China’s interest in Ethereum ramps up. Notably, the Chinese Royal Mint is also experimenting with Ethereum toward the creation of a digital yuan.

Chinese shoppers image from Shutterstock.

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Posted by Samburaj Das