Temasek backs efforts to commercialise blockchain projects

-A +A

SINGAPORE (July 13): Singapore's Temasek Holdings Pte Ltd has said it will support efforts to find commercial applications for a project that explores the use of blockchain in the financial industry.

The fifth and final phase of Project Ubin, a central-bank initiative that began in 2016, has been completed, Temasek and the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) said in a joint statement today. The last phase developes a prototype for a blockchain-based payment network and tests connectivity with other applications.

"We look forward to supporting commercialisation efforts emanating from Project Ubin and other application areas, with a view to drive greater adoption of blockchain technology," Temasek's deputy chief executive officer Chia Song Hwee said in the statement.

Project Ubin validated Temasek's efforts to explore and build blockchain solutions focused on digital identity, digital currencies, and financial asset tokenisation, he added.

Blockchain, the technology underpinning digital currencies like Bitcoin, is being adopted worldwide to streamline services ranging from trade finance, cross-border payments, to land registry.

Temasek said in May it joined the Libra Association, the organisation behind Facebook Inc's proposed digital currency.

Project Ubin has demonstrated the benefits of blockchain in areas including salary payments, capital markets, and multi-currency payments, according to a report by Accenture commissioned by Temasek and the MAS.

Temasek and the MAS develop the multi-currency payment network prototype together with JPMorgan Chase & Co. It can serve as a test network to develop the cross-border payment infrastructure in cooperation with other central banks and the financial industry, the joint statement said.

Other Project Ubin experiments involve salary payments to gig workers with recruitment agency Adecco Group AG, and digital dividend payments in Swiss francs to investors in Singapore through Sygnum Bank AG.