World Economic Forum Reveals 44 Banks Have Researched and Experimented With Blockchain
The World Economic Forum's (WEF) whitepaper released on Wednesday; March 27 reveals that 44 banks are either researching or experimenting with blockchain technology in order to ascertain its use cases, whereas others are looking into central bank digital currencies (CBDCs), according to reports on April 3.
WEF's Report Reveals Banks' Interest in Blockchain Technology
Per the report, a whitepaper released by the WEF reveals that 44 banks across the world are either researching the area of blockchain or are experimenting with it. Others are more interested in CBDCs and have the potential of issuing it in the near future.
A number of these financial institutions have also been studying the space for a period of three to four years, with a spike in interest in the distributed ledger technology from 2016.
Ashley Lannquist, a project lead in blockchain at the World Economic Forum and primary author of the report while speaking to the media revealed that these banks usually face two significant setbacks and these are technical and policy issues.
According to her, the technical aspect revolves around their ability to ensure that the new system meets its intended purpose and data is accurately preserved.
As for the policy aspect, it has to do with banks studying the system in order to avert unintended consequences that could arise through its use.
Banks are Not in a Hurry to Adopt Blockchain
While Lannquist noted that financial institutions may not be in a hurry to adopt the blockchain due to the fact that they already have an efficient system, there are banks in emerging countries that need for it.
An instance is the National Bank of Cambodia, a financial institution that is already looking to launch its national payment system based on blockchain technology.
Lannquist revealed that the domestic banking system in the region was far from excellent given that they are broken down in fragments. Moreover, a lot of people are either underbanked or unbanked.
Likewise, some Cambodian residents who are not using a bank have come to rely on private payment apps, and these are platforms that are not be connected to a bank, and as such, it still poses certain limitations on how they can transact.
A combination of these brought about the country's need for the blockchain-based national payment system whose launch has been set for the end of this year.
In addition to that, the country is not just looking out to pilot the system first but will move straight on to implement the system in 10 banks.
France Implements Adopts Blockchain-based System
France is another country that was named as also trying out ethereum using smart contract, and it has innovated with the use of a blockchain-based system for provisioning and sharing Single Euro Payments Area Credit Identifiers (SCIs).
While these are steps taken by the banks themselves, the project lead revealed that the WSF is also playing its part in linking financial institutions that are new to the blockchain space with banks that have gained some level of experience.
Experts in the crypto sphere are also connected to these banks during annual conferences and periodic in-person meetings and webinars.
Lannquist also outlined that they were relying on the conclusions these banks have made after studying the blockchain and the reasons that led to their end.