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Blockchains begin impacting businesses
August 15, 2018, 3:19 pm

Blockchains are unobtrusively impacting lives of ordinary people who may not even be aware of the technology that they use on a daily basis. The technology, which first emerged around ten years ago to protect digital cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, is today being used by companies in a wide range of sectors for other types of deal-flow.

The concept behind blockchain technology is that it automatically records an official and tamperproof account of digital transactions. That information is then accessible online to the public, giving buyers the ability to verify the claim online, as opposed to merely trusting the label on the product. The technology also cuts out the middle-man, so that third-parties like banks or lawyers, do not need to be paid to process or validate agreements.

Governments are also increasingly adopting blockchain technology to ensure safe and corruption-free transactions. In the UAE, the government is going ahead with plans to convert 50 percent of all its government transactions to blockchain as part of its Strategy 2021. This is expected to result in cost savings of around US$3 billion annually and reduce labor time by 77 million hours each year.

Blockchain also threatens to disrupt the MENA region’s remittance industry and change the way that money is sent back home by millions of expatriates in the region. With blockchain certifying these transactions automatically, the fees commonly charged by bank intermediaries will completely disappear. Some experts forecast that this could one day render financial institutions unrecognizable.

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