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Philippines’ UnionBank, ConsenSys to run blockchain pilot with five rural banks
The Union Bank of Philippines (UnionBank) is conducting a blockchain pilot in collaboration with US-based blockchain startup ConsenSys, Philippine News Agency reported.
For this initiative, five rural banks in Mindanao have been also selected, which includes Cantilan Bank, PR Savings Bank, City Savings Bank, FairBank, and Progressive Bank. They have the required approval from the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas to participate in the pilot project.
Aimed at financial inclusion, the i2i Project seeks to bring unbanked Filipinos under the mainstream financial system, and link rural banks into the country's financial network, UnionBank chair Dr. Justo Ortiz said.
"The i2i Project is a real-time, cost-effective and secure retail payment system in the blockchain," Ortiz said, adding that the technology can help "crack the hole of financial inclusivity."
Aiai Garcia, ConsenSys Solutions Lead in Asia-Pacific, provided further details on the pilot project. Garcia said that the collaboration will leverage Kaleido platform, adding that UnionBank is their first bank client in the Philippines.
Officially unveiled earlier this month, Kaleido is a new Blockchain Business Cloud aimed at speeding and simplifying enterprises' journey to using the technology. It is the first Software-as-a-Service featuring popular Ethereum packages Geth and Quorum.
“Our team was inspired to harness blockchain in order to reach farther into our rural communities of the Philippines. Many people are still financially excluded and we’re looking to change that. In partnership with ConsenSys and running on the Kaleido platform, we successfully accelerated Project i2i into active pilot without the complexity and cost of starting from scratch,” Ortiz said in a statement.