United Kingdom: The unanimous financial technology capital of Europe

If only bitcoin happened to be a mortal, it would have been totally bruised and battered after all the fights and controversies it has gone through. Fortunately, it’s continuing to fight its way up, despite negative views from those who don’t totally understand what it really is. If there’s one safe haven where the bitcoin can soothe all the pains and scars, it would be the UK.

 

Surprised? Well, I honestly can’t blame you. Initially, the Bank of England (BOE) was adamant and critical onto how bitcoin can presumably affect the economy of the country. Now, BOE is one of the firm supporters of digital currency and is just one of those who believe that it can revolutionize the existing banking methods and payment systems.

 

Last Wednesday, March 17, 2015, the government of UK formally announced its plans to regulate digital currencies like bitcoin. All proposals, which are designed to support innovation and at the very least reduce illicit transactions involving bitcoins or any other cryptocurrencies, will be evaluated in the next parliament meeting. Most of all, it will apply anti-money laundering policies to all digital currency exchanges in the country. In a document it got from its Office for Science, the British government acknowledges the potential of digital currency to replace traditional money. Meanwhile, Britain’s Treasury will add $10 million pounds to the existing funds allotted to their new research scheme on digital currency technology. With the help of the British Standards Association, a set of protocols will likewise be developed to protect consumers.

 

Tom Robinson, one of the founders of the first bitcoin insurance vault in the world called Elliptic, expects the move of the British government to neutralize the current situation of bitcoin. This is especially true as the US, specifically the state of New York, is UK’s only major counterpart in terms of bitcoin usage. Understandably, most countries are still ignoring bitcoin due to security concerns or notions that it can be easily used for illegal financial transactions.

 

Robinson, who is a UK Digital Currency Association board member, further noted that the new regulation is the government’s way of legitimizing and promoting the growth of digital currency. Hopefully, this will open the doors of other countries and persuade them in adopting digital cash in addition to their respective currencies.

 

 

It won’t be much of a surprise anymore if in the next few months or years, a few other digital currencies will be introduced to the world. In fact, one big company is thought to be now creating its own version of the bitcoin.

 

It has been rumored that IBM, one of the technology giants in the US, is developing a digital payment system using the blockchain technology adopted by bitcoin. An unnamed source noted that IBM’s main objective is to expedite transactions and to lessen the costs involved with the absence of third party intermediaries. The source added that, not like bitcoin, IBM’s digital currency will be linked to the bank accounts of customers and will be under the control of centralized banks. IBM’s interest on digital currency is no secret though as it has been researching on blockchain technology for quite some time. Along with Samsung, it introduced a bitcoin-based system called ADEPT that will establish a decentralized network of devices in the Internet

 

This positive news undoubtedly makes the UK the financial technology capital of Europe.

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