Published: Thu, March 21, 2019
Money | By Ralph Mccoy

Australia to Develop a National Blockchain Road-map to Nurture Local Industry

Australia to Develop a National Blockchain Road-map to Nurture Local Industry

Particularly, the authorities laid out plans to focus on key areas concerning blockchain which includes regulations, innovation, skills and capacity building, investment, worldwide competitiveness, and collaboration.

Per the press release, Australia's Minister for Industry, Science, and Technology, Karen Andrews, and the Minister for Trade, Tourism, and Investment (Austrade), Simon Birmingham, announced the development of a blockchain roadmap along with $100,000 AUD of funding from the Morrison Government.

Furthermore, Australia's government has already allotted an additional AU$350,000 (~$250,000) to Standards Australia, in a bid to boost the development of standardized global blockchain standards.

The press release makes note of the governmental funding that has already gone into promoting blockchain technology, including 700,000 Australian dollars (AU) (around $497,000) to the Digital Transformation Agency to investigate the benefits of using blockchain for government payments, and AU$350,000 (around $248,000) to Standards Australia to develop worldwide blockchain standards.

The funding initiative will help the Ministry for Industry, Science, and Technology to support blockchain companies joining the Australian Trade and Investment Commission (Austrade) to attend the landmark Consensus blockchain conference in New York City later this year.

The idea is they will work with blockchain experts in order to develop Australia's national blockchain strategy, as well as contribute to an incoming government report into blockchain use-cases.

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In July 2018, IBM also signed a five-year AU$1 billion ($740 million) deal with the Australian government to use blockchain and other technologies to improve data security and automation across federal departments.

Interestingly, this is not the first time that the Australian government is investing in the development of blockchain technology.

According to the media release, Minister Birmingham stressed that the government's blockchain ratification will assist in ensuring that "Australia and [its] tech companies stay ahead of the game in one of the world's fastest growing technology sectors". The aim of it was to lead the development of worldwide Blockchain standards through the global Organisation for Standardization.

"Austrade's upcoming mission will connect Australian blockchain companies and start-ups with investors and customers with a view to expanding their businesses globally", Birmingham said.

"Consensus is the leading event for blockchain globally and will present significant opportunities for Australian tech companies to showcase their products on the world-stage, he said".

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