Pakistan implements Alipay’s blockchain solutions, but bans BTC

Pakistan implements Alipay’s blockchain solutions, but bans BTC
Jan 11, 2019 by Rico Wise

The campaign of the Pakistani FATF to employ a blockchain solution in order to facilitate the efficiency of AML policies displays the standard “blockchain, not cryptocurrency” stance propelled by central banking institutions and big financial organizations.

A few months back, Pakistan had set up a collaboration with Telenor Microfinance Bank, a financial organization that belongs to Alipay, which is a China-based 150 billion dollars’ worth finance and technology colossus that bought a 45% stake in Microfinance Bank for 184.5 million USD.

Recently, Pakistan has made an announcement that it had successfully implemented the blockchain remittance network from Alipay, allowing the Standard Chartered Bank to become the settlement banking institutions for handling international remittance transactions between Malaysia and Pakistan.

Tariq Bajwa, the governor and president of the State Bank of Pakistan claimed that the introduction of the blockchain solution by the government is a significant milestone in the growth of financial inclusion in Pakistan.

Nevertheless, Abid Qamar, another representative of the State Bank of Pakistan, stated that BTC and other digital currencies stay banned by the government, raising concerns on the reasons for the blockchain tech promotion.

The government has implemented a blockchain network created by a few firms that offer the central authority substantial supervision over the entire platform. A permissioned ledger is, by design, akin to the systems already in place and run by the majority of central banking institutions.

Therefore, while the Pakistani government may seem to have engaged in a rather open-minded approach towards finance and technology regulation, the government’s blanked restriction on such public blockchain platforms as Bitcoin and Ethereum does not resonate with the ongoing stance regarding the financial inclusion.

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Chief Spokesman, State Bank of Pakistan
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Telenor Microfinance Bank Limited (Formerly Tameer Microfinance Bank), established in 2005, is the first scheduled microfinance bank in Pakistan.
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