SWIFT, Ripple Support EU Blockchain Group Launch

A new blockchain association has been created to promote the adoption of the technology across the European Union.

The group — the International Association of Trusted Blockchain Applications (INATBA) — officially launched on April 3 in Brussels and includes SWIFT, IBM, Ripple and around 100 other companies and organizations.

As a European Commission initiative, INATBA is a “global multi-stakeholder forum” created to bring “industry, startups and SMEs, policy makers, international organizations, regulators, civil society and standard-setting bodies to support blockchain and distributed ledger technology (DLT) to be mainstreamed and scaled-up across multiple sectors,” according to a press release.

Other members include banks such as Barclays and BBVA, consultancy firm Accenture and French beauty company L’Oreal. Blockchain startups are also participating, such as ethereum development studio ConsenSys AG, blockchain tech firm Bitfury, blockchain firm R3, crypto hardware wallet maker Ledger and crypto protocol developer IOTA.

To achieve its mission, the association will “develop a framework that promotes public and private sector collaboration, regulatory convergence, legal predictability and ensures the system’s integrity and transparency.” In addition, it will create guidelines and specifications for blockchain and distributed ledger-based applications.

Several European Commission officials spoke at the launch, including Commissioner for the Digital Economy and Society Mariya Gabriel, who gave the keynote address.

Carlos Kuchkovsky, BBVA’s head of research and development for new digital business, spoke about the association last year, noting that it could play an important role in developing blockchain best practices and standards, as well as “avoiding fragmentation on a European level,” according to CoinDesk.

This is the latest initiative by the European Commission to support the adoption of blockchain technology. Last year, it created the European Blockchain Partnership (EBP) with 22 member countries to promote the delivery of cross-border digital public services using blockchain. The Commission also created the EU Blockchain Observatory and Forum last February.

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