As government offices and business continue to look at using blockchain in so many different ways, the International Monetary Fund, an international lender with a lot of clout globally, is warning about the possible downside to cryptocurrency – possible destabilization, disruption and unforeseen problems.
However, another giant global trade group, the World Bank, is much more favorable toward blockchain adoption, and its position is making headlines today as analysts scour a new report from the World Bank Group released within the past 48 hours.
The report centers on blockchain for government procurement or “e-GP.”
“(e-GP systems) have been operational for close to two decades now,” write the authors of the report in the initial executive statement. “Many countries in America, Europe and Asia Pacific have adopted e-GP, and countries in the African region are now getting on-boarded. The number of e-GP installations world-wide will be in the range of 200 – 250. It is just a question of time before close to 100% of the countries will have adopted e-GP and almost all government procurement will happen online in e-GP.”
In the report, authors layout rising e-GP adoption rates researched by the Asian Development Bank.
Showing modernization in countries like the Philippines, Nepal, Indonesia, Vietnam and Thailand, as well as some Eastern European countries and others around the world, the report’s problem statement shows where some improvements can still be made in e-government procurement, including the handling of work experience certificates, a supplier database and real-time views of contracts that are pending completion.
The report also shows an assertive vision for the future of e-GP:
“In a decade or so, it is expected that in excess of 80% of Government procurement transactions will be processed online in a couple of hundred e-GP systems spread across the World … the e-GP blockchain network should be extended to enable Banks located anywhere in the World to seamlessly submit authenticated Electronic Performance Bank Guarantees on behalf of a Supplier in any of the networked e-GP systems…”
The World Bank group’s report goes into great detail about how these new technologies can work – with visualizations that further show how stakeholders can use a blockchain network to improve global finance. It also lays out details on potential pilot programs and makes notes on a governance system for e-GP blockchain.
Nor is the World Bank the only party beating the drum for quick digitization of currency transactions, use of the blockchain ledger, and general innovation in money.
“The increasing use of technology in procurement and sourcing is one of the most visible and urgent trends in the global supply chain,” wrote The Strategic Sourceror about a year ago. “Communication in particular has become drastically faster in recent years. Failure to incorporate this new speed of contact into sourcing and procurement strategies is a missed opportunity for companies of all kinds, and it may open up an efficiency gap between businesses with competent information technology in procurement and those without.”
However, recently, the World Bank has been a big voice for crypto – and today’s news underlines that position.
Most of us wouldn’t expect Bitcoin and other large cryptocurrencies to jump at news like this – and as of press time, they’re not. However, it makes sense to factor the World Bank’s enthusiasm into a buy-and-hold strategy for cryptocurrencies in an investor portfolio.