This week saw the launch of yet another blockchain consortium, as the Korea Financial Investment Association successfully completed the launch of a consortium that will include five blockchain firms and twenty-one financial investment firms. The group signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to seal the deal.
The Korea Financial Investment Association’s IT Committee has committed to providing the results of its technical research and distributed ledger case studies to the consortium, and plans to provide assistance with the consortium secretariat operations and training on technical matters. The members of the consortium will work with the secretariat to establish a platform and create business opportunities, with projects planned through 2020 that include a personal authentication platform, automation of clearance and settlement, and OTC trading.
The consortium’s goal is to allow the members to share expertise that can mutually benefit all involved parties, and serve as a blockchain think tank in the local market. Park Sun-moo, managing director of NH Investment & Securities, told Business Korea:
“This consortium is the first case in South Korea where multiple financial firms make use of blockchain. It will contribute to the realization of the essential value of blockchain and maximization of the convenience, security and efficiency of financial transactions.”
The consortium’s creation comes at a time when demand for Bitcoin in South Korea is on the rise and the country’s regulators are eyeing new Bitcoin regulations in the coming year. The country’s government has also pledged $2.65 billion in funding through 2019 to help develop its own FinTech sector. According to Financial Services Commission chairman Yim Jong-yong, the government of South Korea hopes to achieve “systematization of digital currency on a full scale in tandem with a global trend in the U.S., Japan and other countries.”