What are your views on the state of the blockchain industry?
Justin Sun: The growth and evolution of blockchain has been exponential. In 2021, the NFT market exploded and brought in an influx of buyers. Much more progress still needs to be made, and we are far from seeing the end of innovation. It is common to see exciting new ideas take shape during bear markets, and I expect this time to be no different.
The relationship between regulation and crypto is on many people’s minds. What is your take on this?
JS: For our industry to gain mass adoption, regulation is important. The biggest hurdle is educating regulators about how crypto works.
The recent Lummis-Gillibrand Crypto Bill is a big step in the right direction because it properly identifies and organizes digital assets. Prior to this, all digital assets would be considered a security, commodity, or property, depending on the branch of government at work. This bill helps alleviate those miscommunications. This bill may allow crypto to be seen as a mainstream instrument that will only grow its reputation.
Crypto tycoons like CZ and SBF have come out and called themselves the “saviors of crypto.” As a crypto mogul yourself, what are your thoughts on this?
JS: Current market turmoil has disincentivized a lot of developers. I am here alongside TRON DAO to help support those passionate about Web3.
TRON and myself, are willing to spend up to $5 billion on helping ailing and qualified crypto firms. TRON is already investing resources in the growth of the entire blockchain ecosystem. For example, they launched the hackathon series, multiple grants and funds including a $10 million fund to encourage Terra developers to migrate their projects to the TRON/BTTC ecosystem.
Do you see the shift to greener crypto technologies as an important direction to pursue?
JS: This is very important as many cryptocurrencies are adopting Proof-of-Stake (PoS) consensus protocols rather than energy-dependent Proof-of-Work (PoW) protocols. TRON is a leader in creating an affordable and environmentally-friendly ecosystem, especially due to its underlying Delegated Proof-of-Stake (DPoS) mechanism that is more energy efficient than regular PoW and PoS protocols. A recent research report by the Crypto Carbon Ratings Institute (CCRI) found that TRON uses 99.99% less energy than Bitcoin and Ethereum.
About six months ago, you were appointed as Grenada’s Ambassador and Permanent Representative to the World Trade Organization. How has this affected your blockchain business?
JS: Blockchain technology is still in its infancy, and to be able to make a positive impact in the world, proponents of crypto have a duty to help global institutions. This appointment has allowed me to take a step back from the day-to-day workings of the industry and focus on the significant impact that crypto can have around the world.
Do you believe Web3 could help nations such as Grenada?
JS: Absolutely. Grenada is a beautiful country in the Caribbean. Grenada could benefit from integrating blockchain systems into its government and economy, which would ultimately help the taxpayers of the nation. They can also use blockchain technology to digitize tangible assets that they could sell to neighboring countries.
Using Web3 to manage the supply chain of fisheries is a great example in the case of Grenada. It would allow for greater transparency in ethical fishing and trade. It would also be a fantastic way to gather data allowing for better prediction of economic ups and downs. Crypto tourism is another area I see Web3 impacting small island nations like Grenada.
What’s the latest news about TRON? Is it still a competitor to Ethereum or is it now an entirely different ballgame?
JS: TRON dissolved its Foundation and transitioned into a DAO structure in December 2021. This decision was made primarily to give more influence to users of the ecosystem. One of the major focuses now is on developing a reliable decentralized stablecoin to coexist with centralized versions like USDC or USDT. Today the ethos is no longer about being the next Ethereum killer but rather about creating utility that will onboard the next billion users, and that can only happen when chains start working together towards this larger goal.
What is USDD, and how is USDD different from LUNA?
JS: USDD is a decentralized stablecoin whose price stability is maintained through a series of monetary policies adopted by the TRON DAO Reserve (TDR) based on market conditions. The price of USDD is not strictly pegged to the U.S. dollar but floats up and down around it. An analogy is the Linked Exchange Rate System (LERS), established to maintain the Hong Kong dollar’s link to the U.S. dollar. USDD is minted by the whitelisted institutions of the TDR through burning TRX. Its value is backed by the over-collateralization of highly liquid digital assets under the TDR, including BTC, USDT, USDC, TRX, and potentially more. The circulation and use of USDD are free from the intervention of any centralized parties.
On the other hand, UST is pegged to $1 by a pure arbitrage algorithmic system of burning and minting. The UST peg does not rely on the existence of any reserve. Once UST was minted far more than the realizable market value of Luna, the stability of UST could no longer be sustained. The stability of USDD however, is backed by the reserve assets of the TDR, not the price of TRX. The details of the TDR’s reserves are published in real-time on the TRON DAO website.
You recently announced you won the bid for the first seat on Blue Origin’s New Shepard rocket. What motivated you to go to space?
JS: With the rapid development of commercial aerospace, entering space may be an opportunity that every person can experience in his or her lifetime. The initiative of Blue Origin to take more people to space to see Earth as our singular common home is extraordinary. Club for the Future offers a way to use that experience to inspire youth around the world to dream and act on their dreams of science, technology, and space exploration. I felt compelled to help further that vision through my bid.