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Runtime 1401 Upgrade Brings XC-20 Minting to Moonriver and Soon, Moonbeam

Boston, MA – April 14, 2022 – Moonbeam, the top destination for multi-chain applications on Polkadot, has added functionality to allow projects to mint new XC-20s on Moonriver, and soon on Moonbeam. These updates are part of the runtime 1401 upgrade and mean that, in addition to depositing Substrate-style tokens as XC-20s via cross chain transfers, XC-20s can also be minted or burned directly on Moonriver and Moonbeam. This is a leap forward in allowing further flexibility for projects and token holders in how and where they use their tokens.

The initial rollout of XC-20s enabled native assets from other parachains to be used on Moonbeam-based DApps as if they were ERC-20 tokens. These XC-20s were created by transferring tokens from their native parachain to Moonriver, and burned by transferring them out. Now, teams can now mint new XC-20 tokens on Moonbeam and Moonriver instead of only importing already existing Substrate tokens. This upgrade creates new opportunities for projects to unlock the potential of the broader ecosystem, and create cross-chain-ready tokens on Moonbeam and Moonriver that can freely move within the Polkadot ecosystem and be used in an unlimited number of DApps.

The runtime 1400 and 1401 releases include several important changes:

  • Mint and burn new XC-20s
  • Democracy precompile (for Moonbeam, since this is already live on Moonriver)
  • Staking and performance improvements

XC-20s were designed to be native cross-chain tokens on Moonbeam. XC-20s conform to the ERC-20 fungible token standard, established as the technical standard for all smart contracts on Ethereum and Ethereum-compatible blockchains while also remaining accessible across Substrate-based chains via Polkadot’s XCM technology. By creating an XC-20, developers can take advantage of all of the local protocols and applications deployed in the Moonbeam EVM, but at the same time leave all options open for future use of these tokens on existing or future parachains in the Polkadot ecosystem.

These new assets are created through democracy, so token holders have the power to vet which XC-20s are created. Voting in on-chain governance through Polkassembly allows users to support this process and participate in referenda using their MetaMask wallet. Projects can now mint an ERC-20 on Moonbeam that stays on Moonbeam, or choose to mint an XC-20 on Moonbeam that can move to other parachains. Through community participation, projects and token holders can use their assets interoperably inside the Polkadot ecosystem to expand their use cases.

About the Moonbeam Network

Moonbeam is an Ethereum-compatible smart contract platform on the Polkadot network that makes it easy to build natively interoperable applications. This Ethereum compatibility allows developers to deploy existing Solidity smart contracts and DApp frontends to Moonbeam with minimal changes. Like Moonriver, its sister parachain on Kusama, Moonbeam is expected to accumulate developer and user activity from the 80+ projects building DApps and protocols on the network. As a parachain on the Polkadot network, Moonbeam benefits from the shared security of the Polkadot Relay Chain and integrations with other chains that are connected to Polkadot. Learn more: