One of the largest banks headquartered in Singapore has revealed it will utilise Blockchain technology in Southeast Asia to send money between banks. The Oversea-Chinese Banking Corporation (OCBC), founded in 1932 by Lee Kong Chian, carried out two practice payment transactions ,between the bank and its subsidiaries, to test out the new technology and see if it will benefit their organization. The tests were between OCBC bank Singapore and bank in Malaysia and a local transfer between OCBC bank Singapore and its private arm, Bank of Singapore. It utilises a payment blockchain solution designed by OCBC bank and a local banking payment startup called BCS Information services.
The bank has turned to Blockchain technology as they believe it is the solution to their problems and will grant them increased efficiency, transparency and security which are major priorities currently. They also believe it will lower costs and improve customer experience and satisfaction which are the key benefits of Bitcoin. The bank plans on using the technology to allow inter-bank payments between the singaporean banks and overseas as it will take less than five minutes for the transaction in comparison the it usually taking up to a day for transfers across borders.
“Blockchain technology is the most transformative technology to date. It is set to revolutionise the financial industry and change the way we work. As such, we are pleased to be the first bank in Southeast Asia to have completed a successful trial for applying this technology to make real-time international payments a reality.” quoted Praveen Raina, the senior vice president of OCBC bank.
This is another example of a country taking hold of new technologies such as bitcoin and utilizing it to increase productivity and reduce costs. This also means that Nigerian Naira can be converted to Bitcoin and sent to Singapore through NairaEx (https://www.nairaex.com/) in the near future.