Author : Sam
On Sunday, Taipei Fubon Commercial Bank declared that it had introduced a blockchain based payment system for retail purposes. The launch of this Ethereum- based Blockchain system of payment comes barely a year since the development of the platform was initiated in March 2017. The payment system, which is the first one of its kind in the country, will serve merchants and restaurants near the National Chenghi University (a national research university which is located in Taipei- the country’s capital). In operation, the system uses the Istanbul Byzantine Fault Tolerance algorithm
The Ethereum-powered Blockchain payment system was developed as a consequence of a partnership deal between Taipei Fabon Commercial Bank and the university. The joint project was then named the ‘Key Technology and Engineering R&D for blockchain Payment Network.’ Trials for the project were the conducted in the University’s main campus where merchants used the blockchain system to sell lunch-time meals to students. This resulted in a four-fold growth in transaction volume owing to reduced cost and time of the transaction. The bank indicated that it took six months for the whole project to go live after which it was officially opened at Zhengda- the first blockchain payment demonstration area.
AMIS Account Link Road Technologies is the blockchain company which offered the blockchain technology used to develop the Ethereum-based payment system. The technology is based on Istanbul BTF algorithm (one of the new algorithms published by AMIS Account Network Technology). It considerably enhances information exchange efficiency while reducing the transaction time to less than a second.
The decentralized nature of the blockchain payment system allows the quantity of transaction of each customer to be instantly recorded and encrypted in the back-end blockchain system with non-tampering features. The retailers can hence query the blockchain account book for the entire transaction record, and simplify the nuclear account operation hence further saving the costs.
Despite the fact that the deployment of this new payment platform is relatively limited a parochial scope of business near the university at the moment, the development comes at a crucial time in Taiwan’s economic history given the new central bank governor’s stressing remarks that the authority ‘is open’ to new technology research and investment citing the research of blockchain technology as a viable payment infrastructure for the country. While addressing the gathering during his ceremonial swearing- in, the new governor stated that the authority will embrace new technologies while at the same time taking the initiative of researching and taking on advancements in Artificial Intelligence, blockchain technology, and big data.
The new governor in his speech added ‘’the bank will also try to explore the feasibility of enhancing the security and efficiency of payment systems using decentralized blockchain technology.” These rare remarks mark the first ever known instance when Taiwan’s central bank openly acknowledges the possibility of exploring blockchain technology. In addition, Taiwan’s government will also embrace ICO’s and cryptocurrencies in a bid to foster and support their growth in the country.