Africa’s largest bank by assets will leverage DLT to improve the speed and transparency of cross-border trade
Hedera Hashgraph announced yesterday they had partnered with Africa’s largest bank by assets, Standard Bank Group, to establish the first Hedera network node in Africa. The move will enable the digitisation of cross-border trade processes and Standard Bank Group has also joined the Hedera Governing Council.
Blockchain and distributed ledger technologies (DLT) have previously been leveraged by Standard Bank Group for use cases such as settlement across partner banks and foreign exchange payments. Now, however, it will be used to improve the speed and transparency of cross-border trade.
Hedera’s DLT removes the need for a trusted intermediary by ensuring the credibility and authenticity of data and sharing it between both parties involved in a transaction. This will greatly improve the efficiency of trades, allowing them to be settled faster.
Hedera Hashgraph CEO, Mance Harmon, commented, “We are seeing an evolution, as organizations and their business partners recognize the value of harnessing the best of private and public distributed ledgers together. Standard Bank has been a trailblazer in its use of DLT to further its mission of developing platforms to engage with and support communities and businesses wherever they operate, and creating more value socially, economically and environmentally for these communities.”
Standard Bank is also joining the likes of Boeing, Google, IBM, University College London and many others as members of the Hedera Governing Council. These council members are responsible for guiding software development and strategy for Hedera, as well as running the initial nodes of its network.
Stablecoins and other digital currencies based on a DLT platform remove challenges to cross-border transactions such as having to depend on banking networks. They also make it easier for businesses to manage their own liquidity needs and track transactions by settling payments instantly with high levels of liquidity and visibility.
Standard Bank Group’s Head of DLT/Blockchain, Ian Putter, added, “As we see increasing interest in Central Bank Digital Currencies (CBDCs), tokenization of assets, and utilization of stablecoins, it has become increasingly clear that digitisation of assets will impact all facets of our business, and we must strategically plan for these pieces to work seamlessly together.”
This announcement follows last month’s news that Hedera Hashgraph’s technology will be leveraged to help monitor the cold storage equipment used in the rollout of COVID-19 vaccines, to maintain their efficacy.