The highest investment in blockchain to this date has been made by the Australian government where it unveiled a plan to release almost $5 million in two pilots.
Governments around the world have in recent years made plans to be more involved in the blockchain space, with notable countries trying to release central bank backed cryptocurrencies. Some others also made it more possible for their citizens to invest and trade in the space by making efforts to understand the space and encourage knowledge accumulation.
The Digital Business Plan
On Sep. 29, the Australian government released its $574 million Digital Business Plan that includes a seven-figure grant for distributed ledger technology initiatives.
The plan was announced by Prime Minister Scott Morrison ahead of next week’s Federal Government budget. It outlines $4.95 million in support of two blockchain pilots that are directed at reducing business compliance costs.
According to the document, Covid-19 led many businesses to move online quickly which caused them to undergo a decade of change in just a few months. Australian businesses and consumers focused on adoption of digital technology enabling them to transform their operations and continue trading through the pandemic.
Through the business plan, there would be significant backing to continue the digital push and expand opportunities for businesses to grow and create more jobs.
The plan also states that it supports the government’s economic recovery by removing the out-dated regulatory barriers, hence boosting the capabilities of small businesses and backing up the uptake of technology across the economy.
$480 million is also part of this business plan and has been put aside for different technological initiatives that could intersect distributed ledger technologies. For example, $183 million towards a new digital identity system and $301 million for developing a single business register which allows businesses to quickly view, update and maintain business registry data in one location.
A Huge Win For Australian Blockchain
According to Chloe White, the National Blockchain Lead from the Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources, the direct funding is a huge win for the Australian blockchain today and that it was the biggest investment from the government in the sector. White has worked closely with industry leaders over the last 8 months to make sure the National Blockchain Roadmap has been implemented. Through this team, they have also announced two blockchain working groups for supply chain and educational credentialing.
The Australian government has expressed a growing attraction in distributed ledger technology (DLT) and blockchain applications throughout 2020. The Select Committee on Financial Technology (FinTech) and Regulatory Technology (RegTech) published an interim report which had over 50 blockchain citations back in September. Submissions made to this committee claimed that blockchain’s potential was estimated at $175 billion annually within five years and $3 trillion by 2030.
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