FINTECH AUSTRALIA: New blockchain standard will drive innovation in Australian fintech startups

Alan Tsen, CEO of FinTech Victoria and member of FinTech Australia’s Blockchain Working Group, with FinTech Australia CEO Danielle Szetho. (Source: supplied)

The industry body for fintech startups in Australia has welcomed a new standards roadmap for blockchain in the country.

Standards Australia released its “Roadmap for blockchain standards” report last week that outlines how the organisation will ensure security and interoperability of future blockchain and distributed ledger systems in Australia.

Standards Australia, as the secretariat on the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) technical committee, will use the local roadmap to push for a set of international standards for blockchain.

FinTech Australia chief executive Danielle Szetho said that blockchain has “almost unlimited potential” to transform the world of finance, especially in the area of international transactions.

“FinTech Australia’s blockchain members had strong input into the development of this roadmap and we intend to work closely with Standards Australia on an ongoing basis to ensure any new standards are fintech-friendly and also serve the greater good,” she said.

She welcomed the new roadmap, saying it would “spark” innovation from Australian entrepreneurs, although local fintech startups had already made tremendous progress in the field, applying it to areas like cross-border payments, labour hire and agriculture.

“For instance, FinTech Australia member AgriDigital in December 2016 successfully executed the world’s first-ever live settlement of a physical commodity on a blockchain between a grower and a buyer,” Szetho said.

Blockchain is a distributed electronic database that maintains records and executes transactions in a secure manner. It allows parties involved in a transaction to deal with each other without requiring third parties to establish and maintain trust.