While research and experimentation with blockchain technology across sectors has been underway for several years, few organizations have deployed it. Although central banks are among the most cautious and prudent institutions in the world, a new white paper published by the World Economic Forum indicates that these institutions, perhaps surprisingly, are among the first to implement blockchain technology.
Central bank activities with blockchain and distributed ledger technology (DLT) are not always well known or communicated. As a result, there is a lot of speculation and misunderstanding. Yet dozens of central banks around the world – from Sweden to South Africa to Singapore – are actively investigating whether blockchain can help solve long-standing issues in banking, such as payment-system efficiency, payment security and resilience, as well as financial inclusion.
These organizations, tasked with overseeing a nation’s monetary policy and financial and economic stability, are very cautious to implement any technology or solution that can have adverse consequences. Yet many central banks are actively researching a variety of use cases to explore the technology’s potential in controlled, secure settings.