The South African Reserve Bank (SARB) just filed a report on a blockchain inter-bank settlement simulation called Project Kokha using Quorum, JP Morgan’s proprietary blockchain.
“The results show that the typical daily volume of the South African payments system could be processed in less than two hours with full confidentiality of transactions and settlement finality. Transactions were processed within two seconds, across a network of geographically distributed nodes, with distributed consensus providing the requisite resilience,” the report read.
The project was launched to determine whether blockchain technology could provide a viable, cost-effective engine for inter-bank settlement. This was done using the participation of seven banks in the country and the cooperation of ConsenSys, a blockchain software company in New York.
This report came only months after the Bank of England launched a similar investigation into blockchain technology, piloting a proof of concept that would test how settlements in the system would work in general. More recently, the UK’s central bank published a report that details how central bank-issued cryptocurrencies would work in various scenarios.
Although most of the interest on the part of central banks concerns blockchain technology and not necessarily cryptocurrencies, their curiosity may extend through the cryptocurrency world. We saw this happen in Switzerland, when the Federal Council sent a proposal to parliament to investigate the use of digital coins issued by central banks.
As more central banks start looking at these things, large financial institutions might start following suit. This is already happening to a degree independently, as Goldman Sachs and ICE — the parent company for the New York Stock Exchange — opened up or are considering opening up trading desks for Bitcoin.
Marko Vidrih @cryptomarks
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