Singapore Aims To Promote Blockchain In Southeast Asiabr>
Singapore’s finance minister Heng Swee Keat said that blockchain technology has the potential to promote financial inclusion in Southeast Asian countries.
Speaking at the 22nd ASEAN Finance Ministers’ Meeting, the finance minister addressed the existing initiative of Singapore’s active blockchain development plans. He said that they will support digital innovations such as financial technology.
“For example, the underlying Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT) presents us with many opportunities for cheap and secure transactions,” Keat said. “This can promote financial inclusion for underserved and underbanked segments in ASEAN.”
The finance minister’s comments come at a time when the country is setting a trend in blockchain-friendly governance. Last month, Singapore’s Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA) launched a blockchain competition with government funds to boost blockchain innovation in the region.
The central bank of the country has also been actively involved in the blockchain space. In October 2017, a consortium led by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) and the Association of Banks in Singapore (ABS) developed software prototypes of three different models for decentralized inter-bank payment and settlements with liquidity savings mechanisms.
In November 2017, MAS joined forces with the Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) to develop a cross-border blockchain platform for trade finance.