By next year, EU’s executive body, the European Commission, plans to launch a new blockchain association comprising of top banking institutions. Spanish banking behemoth, BBVA, is the first of the top five banks joining the blockchain forum.
On Tuesday, November 20th, the BBVA also announced that it would join the International Association for Trusted Blockchain Applications (IATBA) which will commence operation by Q1 of 2019. The announcement for the initiative took place earlier this week at the EU blockchain roundtable event.
IATBA – A Publicly Promoted Initiative
Tuesday’s meeting subtitled “Bringing industries together for Europe to lead in blockchain technologies” focused on formalizing the launch of IATBA. Therefore, the IATBA initiative “aims to bring together companies interested in exploring the potential of blockchain and distributed ledger technologies to transform digital services at a global level.”
The BBVA announcement notes that the IATBA platform will see both public and private sector participation. Private blockchain and DLT experts will also extend their support to outline “EU’s strategy regarding these technologies.”
The association will work towards developing guidelines and protocols for EU’s growing blockchain industry.
According to the European Commision,
Europe’s leadership in the development and uptake of this new technology requires close cooperation between the public and private sectors. Governments and economic actors must work together to overcome regulatory obstacles, increase legal predictability, lead international standardization efforts and accelerate research and innovation to support scalability of innovative blockchain technologies.
BBVA’s Chief Considers IATBA’s Role
BBVA’s head of research & development for new digital business, Carlos Kuchkovsky, discussed the role of the association. Kuchkovsky said that IATBA can play a crucial role in establishing the best standards and practices for the blockchain industry. Furthermore, its role will be to avoid fragmentation at the European level.
Kuchkovsky says that Europe’s robust data protection and privacy management puts it into a position to influence global standards. Moreover, the new association can also solve the most pressing issue of “regulatory uncertainty” in the blockchain sector.
Kuchkovsky believes that it is “essential to establish a system of governance that aligns the different participating industries and their objectives.”
“At BBVA we fully support this initiative and are ready to get to work,“ he said. BBVA has long been working in the blockchain space. Earlier this month, the banking giant tested approving $150M USD syndicate loan using the blockchain technology.
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