SWIFT Tests a DLT-Based E-Voting Solution

Photo credits: Altcoinist

FACTS

  • The worldwide interbank messaging network announces a PoC on e-voting in partnership with large-scale financial institutions.
  • Goals: explore whether DLTs can help manage shareholder meetings the point would be to talk these shareholders into attending these meetings more.
  • Partners: DBS Bank and the Singapore Exchange SGX join as both participants and issuers. HSBC, Deutsche Bank and Standard Chartered Bank join as participants only.
  • This move should for instance allow them to:
    • Trial an e-voting solution with a Central Securities Depository (CSD) and several issuers, through storing and managing information on a permissioned private Blockchain
    • Confirm the use of ISO 20022 for standardising financial data exchanges
    • Demonstrate the viability of hybrid solutions, combining messaging and DLT to foster interoperability
    • Test SWIFT’s ability to host third-party applications in their DLT environment
  • This PoC will run during the first half of 2019 in the Asia Pacific region.

CHALLENGES

  • Complex processes. The management of shareholder meetings and voting processes is time-consuming and resource intensive. The idea for SWIFT is to improve flexibility and transparency through relying on DLTs.
  • New opportunity. In partnership with leading players, the interbank network might start a market revolution and run a successful PoC: as successful as their previous tests on cross-border payments. The challenge will be to prove their ability to host third-party applications in their sandbox.

MARKET PERSPECTIVE

  • SWIFT has been running several DLT-based PoCs. A month ago, a test phase was announced on trailing a gateway for interlinking trading and e-commerce platforms with SWIFT gpi.
  • SWIFT is one of many financial organisations to have been running Blockchain-based tests to improve cross-border transactions’ efficiency and transparency. DLTs have been considered in the past for recording shareholders’ votes: NASDAQ, for instance, tied their Blockchain Link system with the digital identity system e-Residency to authenticate shareholders’ votes at the Tallinn Securities Exchange.

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