Blockchain and Bitcoin round-up: 11 April 2017
Make the most of your limited time with this brief blockchain and Bitcoin round-up. Featuring Commercial Bank of Qatar, Russia, Waves Platform, and a farmer.
The Commercial Bank of Qatar has completed an initial pilot phase using the “first ever” blockchain network to process international transfers in partnership with ABank in Turkey, National Bank of Oman, and United Arab Bank in the UAE, in addition to other unnamed banks in Egypt and India.
Following the pilot phase, the bank will begin to obtain the necessary approvals from Qatar Central Bank and others to extend the network with banking partners and other countries with “high remittances corridors” such as the Philippines, Nepal, Egypt, Pakistan and the UAE. The second phase of its project will also focus on trade finance transactions, to include legal and trade documents.
Grey areas for Bitcoin may be slowly disappearing in Russia, as deputy finance minister Alexey Moiseev told Bloomberg in an interview that it is “now edging closer to their acceptance as a legitimate financial instrument to open a new line of attack on money laundering”.
The Russian authorities hope to recognise Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies in 2018 as they look to enforce rules against illegal transfers. Moiseev says: “If there’s a transaction, the people who facilitate it should understand from whom they bought and to whom they were selling, just like with bank operations.”
Staying in Russia, then a farmer, Mikhail Shlyapnikov, has announced the launch of an initial coin offering (ICO). You might be thinking where’s the fintech? Well, he is the “first farmer in the world” to use blockchain in the agricultural industry. The new project, Kolionovo Ecosystem, is designed to bring in resources for the development of farm production of goods and services.
The ICO is based on the Waves Platform with the use of Emercoin services. Waves Platform is a decentralised blockchain platform that allows any user to issue, transfer, swap and trade custom blockchain tokens on an integrated peer-to-peer exchange. It has recently gained some traction – with a ZrCoin commodities deal and the launch of its decentralised exchange (DEX) and leased proof-of-stake on the Bitcoin network mainnet.