Sunday, 31 May 2020

BBVA and Santander join launch of EU blockchain platform

BBVA and Santander are two of the banks involved in the European Commission’s (EC) planned launch of the International Association for Trusted Blockchain Applications (IATBA) next year.

The latest development comes from an EU Blockchain Roundtable yesterday (20 November) in Brussels with the Commissioner for Digital Economy and Society, Mariya Gabriel and the Director-General for Communications Networks, Content and Technology, Roberto Viola.

The roundtable’s objective is/was to gather support among EU industry leaders and policy makers for an EU strategy to “boost innovation and exploitation of blockchain technology”.

Out of that roundtable, the EU and BBVA revealed that the IATBA will be on its way. The EU says the association could be legally set by Q1 2019. The other banks haven’t been revealed (nice work EU) – and FinTech Futures will try to find them.

BBVA says the purpose of this publicly-sponsored initiative is to “garner support from private blockchain and DLT experts to contribute to outline the EU’s strategy regarding these technologies”.

Carlos Kuchkovsky, BBVA’s head of research and development new digital business, comments: “Blockchain and other new technologies – artificial intelligence (AI), for example – have to be understood as simple pieces that make digital ecosystems reliable”.

He adds that blockchain is not only a technology, but it “engenders” new business models creating a “tokenised economy” and “paving the way to a decentralised economy in the future”.

This follows on from April 2018, when the EC started working on rolling out the European Blockchain Partnership (EBP), which has now been signed by 27 countries.

That partnership is a vehicle for cooperation; to exchange experience and expertise in technical and regulatory fields; and prepare for the launch of EU-wide blockchain applications across the “Digital Single Market”.

BBVA’s involvement in blockchain is well known. Recent examples include delivering the first syndicated loan on the technology; and joining the Spanish National Securities Market Commission (CNMV), BME and others for a pilot test for improved issuing of warrants.

Santander is of course part of the trading platform

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