The fourth Singapore Fintech Festival was recently held in Singapore. On the last day of the festival, financial experts discussed the connection between blockchain and inclusive finance, one of the main themes of the event.
Discussions sparked in a panel joined by Changpeng Zhao (CZ), CEO of Binance, Weimin Guo, Chief Scientist of the Bank of China, and Vice-Chairman of the Chinese Internet Financial Working Committee, as well as other notable blockchain experts.
CZ mentioned that although the use of mobile payments such as WeChat payment was very common in China, it was an exclusion for foreigners in China, adding that cross-border transactions could also be made easier with blockchain solutions.
CZ also revealed that Binance signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Ukraine government, as a consulting role to advise them and commented: “A government signing an MoU with a blockchain company is quite significant. Every country wants to lead the financial revolution; private enterprises should be global leaders as we can always do things faster.”
Weimin Guo mentioned that the problem of financial inclusion would be solved by blockchain, as it allows more access to credible data, loans at a lower cost for those who may not have a credit history, real-time online settlements, and equity to small to medium enterprises (SMEs).
Guo explained that Bank of China is currently focusing on the application in the wholesale banking domain, as the total of transactions has reached 20 billion renminbi (RMB) as 30 banks have joined the transaction platform. Guo added that the Bank of China currently has 12 patents pending with more than 100 people working on blockchain-related projects.
Since 2016, blockchain has been deployed in Hong Kong for real estate prop trading, from mortgage services to assessing the value of the real estate. By using blockchain technology, Guo said that the surveyors were able to ensure that the information was traceable and allowed for data to be verifiable, which enables the automation of the mortgage process as well.
When asked about the current regulatory strategy towards blockchain in China, Guo stated that China has been encouraging blockchain technology to be used as a more common technology in other industries other than financial services as well. He said: “A lot of synergies between industries could create value and efficiencies in the industry, by applying this technology, does have advantages.”