Department of Finance, Dubai, Launches A Blockchain-Based Payment System

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Photo Credit: Dentons

According to Zawya a local news site, the Dubai Department of Finance (DoF) has entered into a partnership with the Smart Dubai Office in an attempt to launch a blockchain powered payment system.

The new platform which has been officially called “Payment Reconciliation and Settlement,” was launched on Sunday and is uniquely designed for government agencies including Dubai Police, Roads and Transport Authority (RTA), Dubai Health Authority (DHA), and others.
According to local reports, the Dubai Department of Finance and SDO designed the payment system to provide for a more accurate and transparent governance process, as well as to enable real-time payments among all government agencies and structures.

The need for this blockchain powered payment system cannot be overemphasized especially considering the fact that the existing process for transactions within Dubai’s government agencies is time-consuming and can sometimes take 45 days before a given operation is completed.

At the moment, the new system is already been used by the Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) and the Knowledge and Human Development Authority (KHDA). So far, the blockchain powered payment system has been used to complete more than five million transactions.

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Commenting on the technology, Dr. Aisha Bin Bishr, Director General at the SDO, stated that blockchain is “one of the most promising of [emerging] technologies.”
In 2017, the SDO group was awarded the highest honors at the Smart Cities Expo and World Congress in Barcelona, putting them first among 308 teams, thanks to their Dubai blockchain Strategy.

It is important to note that Smart Dubai isn’t the only government-backed initiative that intends to leverage emerging technologies such as blockchain in the country. As a matter of fact, the UAE Vice President and Prime Minister launched the “UAE Blockchain Strategy 2021” initiative in April, in a bid to become a global leader in adopting the technology.

In another development, the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) announced that it is partnering with Smart Dubai to develop a “Court of the Blockchain.” This technology is designed to address the shortcomings of the UAE’s legal system.

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