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Singapore Central Bank and JPMorgan Build Blockchain-based Payments System

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SINGAPORE – The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), JPMorgan and Temasek have developed a blockchain-based prototype that enables payments that can support a range of currencies on the same network.

Blockchain Prototype Platform

The prototype platform began as part of the ongoing Project Ubin initiative, and was developed in partnership with investment banking multinational JPMorgan and Singapore government-owned investment firm Temasek. This multi-currency payments network has the potential to improve cost efficiencies for businesses and is undergoing industry testing to ascertain its ability to integrate with commercial blockchain applications.

Project Ubin

Project Ubin is a collaboration with the industry to explore the use of Blockchain and Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT) for clearing and settlement of payments and securities. The project aims to help MAS and the industry better understand the technology and the potential benefits it may bring through practical experimentation. This is with the eventual goal of developing simpler to use and more efficient alternatives to today’s systems based on central bank issued digital tokens.

With Ubin now in its fifth phase with JPMorgan as the infrastructure partner. Of the prototype, MAS said it will “provide interfaces for other blockchain networks to connect and integrate seamlessly.” It’s also been built to offer additional benefits such as delivery-versus-payment (DvP) settlement with private exchanges, conditional payments and escrow and payment commitments for trade finance. determine the commercial viability and value of the blockchain-based payments network. To date, MAS and its partners have engaged more than 40 financial and non-financial firms to explore the potential benefits of the network.

“We hope this development will encourage other central banks to conduct similar trials, and we will make the technical specifications publicly accessible to accelerate these efforts; … We look forward to linking up with more blockchain networks to improve cross-border connectivity. This will be a big step forward in making cross-border transactions faster, cheaper, and safer.”
– Sopnendu Mohanty, chief finTech officer at MAS.

Accenture has been commissioned to publish the project report in early 2020. The report will list the potential blockchain use cases that will benefit from a blockchain-based payments network, and set out additional features that the network could provide.

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