Australia is set to launch a national blockchain platform for businesses

The so-called Australian National Blockchain will build the first nationwide, cross-industry, large-scale digital platform to enable entrepreneurs to use smart legal contracts

Already established as one of the world leaders in blockchain implementation, Australia’s government now plans to take adoption a step further by developing a national open ledger system for businesses.

The platform will be known as the Australian National Blockchain (ANB), and it will be developed in partnership with IBM and the country’s Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO). They both have formed a consortium that also includes the law firm of Herbert Smith Freehills.

The objective of the ANB

The purpose of the ANB is to create the first country-wide, cross-industry, large-scale, digital platform that will allow business in Australia to collaborate amongst each other using blockchain-powered smart legal contracts.

The national blockchain platform will also enable companies to share data and confirm the authenticity of legal-binding contracts using the smart contract technology.

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The ANB will provide the businesses with the smart legal contracts, which will include clauses with the capacity to record external data sources, including the Internet of Things (IoT) device data, which will enable the contract clauses to execute if and when the contract conditions are met automatically.

An opportunity to improve

Herbert Smith Freehills Head of Blockchain Natasha Blycha says blockchain and other revolutionary technologies are an opportunity to make the legal industry much more efficient.

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“Technologies like blockchain are set to transform the legal industry and the wider business landscape as we know it,” she says.

“This presents a huge opportunity for agile and forward-thinking firms and has the potential to deliver significant benefits to our clients and the business community as a whole.”

Clients are delighted

Blycha says her firm’s clients have expressed enthusiasm regarding the process of automation and how it can help the industry move away from the current hard copy system. They believe it will “simplify supply chains and quickly and securely share information with customers and regulators”.

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Authorities have invited regulators, banks, law firms and businesses to participate in the pilot, which is to be launched before the end of this year.

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