Colombian Central Bank Announces Plans To Trial R3 Software

The Colombian central bank, Banco de la República Colombia, has announced plans to trial the R3 Corda protocol in developing its own use cases for distributed ledger technology.

Confirming it had reached an agreement with the R3 consortium to develop on the Corda platform, the bank joins other global central banks at the forefront of advancing the technology in practical use cases.

In doing so, the bank joins over 80 other financial institutions who have already signed up to the R3 consortium, including the Monetary Authority of Singapore, which has become one of the leading central banks driving forward the technology.

Corda is an open-source platform developed by the R3 group, and was launched back in 2015. Since then, R3 has been working actively to expand its portfolio of members to include a number of financial regulators and government departments globally.

Earlier this year, R3 CEO David Rutter said that expanding the horizons of the group to encompass new members and partners was crucial to a broader uptake of its technology.

“Ultimately, our goal is to have the regulators involved from the start, right from the design through the experiment and the pilot and the prototyping.”

While Banco de la República Colombia is not responsible for financial regulation in the country, its move comes with the full endorsement of the Colombian government, which many analysts expect could help further bolster a more comprehensive adoption of the technology in Colombia.

According to sources at the bank, the technology could ultimately be used in managing securities exchange and transactions across the Colombian financial sector.

“It is in our interest to evaluate the benefits of this technology for the safe and efficient management of the exchange of securities in the Colombian financial system.”

While the specific details of the tests between R3 and the bank remain unspecified, other central banks in the region and beyond will keep a close eye on the use cases and proofs-of-concept, if any, to emerge from the current round of testing.

The news comes at a time of increasing interest in distributed ledger technology and the blockchain across financial regulators and monetary authorities, with central banks globally turning an increasing focus toward how the technology can be implemented in their own domestic markets.