The benefits of the blockchain are many, and improving the speed with which transactions are completed is among the most obvious benefits that make the technology relevant across a wide array of applications. The increase in speed is due in large part to the rapid, multi-level verification which blockchain provides, eliminating the need to verify paperwork across different regulatory agencies by transferring physical paperwork from one entity to another before a transaction is approved and completed.
It's the reason financial institutions such as banks consider blockchain to be the wave of the future. The global public ledger that is the blockchain automatically records transactions and provides a built-in, unalterable audit trail which constitutes a safety net for those engaging in financial transactions. Further, platforms such as R3's Corda allow third parties such as necessary regulatory agencies to be incorporated in a given transaction to ensure that both parties are providing the necessary elements in complying with industry standards and the law.
All of this means the streamlining of previously cumbersome processes, so a short-term investment in the blockchain will mean time, money, and paperwork spared in the long-term.
Among those who are beginning to or have already realized these benefits are national governments. The Australian government in particular has already invested in blockchain in order to attain more efficiency in the processes by which it conducts trade.
The nation’s Department of Home Affairs has announced that it is aiming to modernize the processes by which it conducts international exchanges. The primary impetus for a move toward the blockchain, officials say, is more transparency in end-to-end transactions and greater access to real-time intelligence regarding the logistics of trades. The blockchain represents the opportunity to consolidate the many elements involved with international trade into a single “touch point”, resulting in more streamlined, easy-to-track and monitor trade supply chains.
The majority of traders are trusted and interact in a secure and transparent supply chain, a department spokesperson said. Intelligence and risk assessment capabilities and revenue collection are improved by new and emerging technologies, such as blockchain, that would improve the veracity, validation, and analysis of intelligence and trade data.
Australia’s DHA has also said that they remain open to exploring the benefits that could be provided by the likes of IoT, cloud computing, data analytics, and AI, but that for now, the blockchain remains the most apparent means by which to improve the processes required by international trade. The Australian government went so far as to allocate approximately $520,000, or $700,000 AUD, to blockchain-related research.
It’s an astute move toward adopting a technology which will, in time, offer a uniform platform by which international transactions can be conducted.