ECCB signs agreement on blockchain pilot

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The Eastern Caribbean Central Bank (ECCB) and the Barbados-based financial technology company, Bitt Inc., have signed a memorandum of understanding to conduct a pilot on blockchain technology in the ECCB member countries.

During the pilot, the ECCB will work closely with Bitt Inc. to develop, deploy and test technology which focuses on data management, compliance and transaction monitoring system for Know Your Customer, Anti-Money Laundering, and Combating the Financing of Terrorism.

A blockchain is a continuously growing list of records which are linked and secured by encryption. Once recorded, the data in any given block cannot be altered without the alteration of all subsequent blocks and alerting everyone on the network.

According to the central bank, this will help to improve the risk profile of the Eastern Caribbean Currency Union and mitigate against the trend of de-risking by the region’s correspondent banking partners.

It added that the pilot will also focus on developing a secure, resilient digital payment and settlement platform with embedded regional and global compliance; and the issuance of a digital EC currency which will operate alongside physical EC currency.

The project is part of the bank’s Strategic Plan 2017-2021.  The pilot is due to commence later this year and will be conducted under the supervision of the ECCB, and in controlled environments.

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