Italian Banking Association Completes First Phase Of Blockchain Trial

Blockchain, News | October 3, 2018 By:

The Italian Banking Association (ABI) has successfully completed the first phase of a blockchain trial for interbank reconciliations.

The interbank Spunta Project, first announced in June of this year, was carried out by ABI LAB, the Italian research and development center for banking technologies, in partnership with 14 Italian banks, including Banca Mediolanum, Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena, Banca Sella, and BNL BNP Paribas Group, among others. The objective of the project is to provide data transparency and visibility, faster transaction execution and the possibility of performing checks and exchanges directly within the application.

During the trial, the group successfully completed 1.2 million movements on an infrastructure of 14 nodes distributed by the banks. With the initial phase declared a success, the association is poised to launch the next one, which will see the banks collaborate on a regular basis with new applications based on distributed databases.

Based on the positive results of the first stage of the test, ABI believes that the application of blockchain technology will improve certain specific aspects of current operations that can result in discrepancies that are difficult for the banks to manage. These include the time needed to identify transactions between banks that do not match, the standardization of the process and the single communications protocol.

ABI said the project is now entering an “advanced operational phase” in which distributed ledger technology (DLT) database concepts are applied to an interbank process.

“The new process will, while respecting the confidentiality of the information, make bilateral channels available through which each counterparty can exchange information,” ABI said. “Through the use of the DLT platform and the implementation of smart contract, it will be possible to provide automatic feedback on bank transactions, thus simplifying and accelerating the reconciliation process.”