On the release of a report, British Member of Parliament (MP) Eddie Hughes urges government to appoint a Chief Blockchain Officer, stating that blockchain technology can save the UK government £8 Billion.
Entitled ‘Unlocking Blockchain‘, the report published by Freer, a think-tank connected with the British Tory conservative party, proposed a UK developmental target, described as:
“a longterm aim for government departments to make a 1 percent efficiency by embracing blockchain and other associated technologies.”
It states that realising the 1 percent saving amounting to £8 billion ($10.5bn), would be achieved by the application of the technology to UK public services databases.
Among a number of recommendations, the report suggests that businesses standing to benefit from increased adoption of blockchain technology, could fund a competition to attract talented blockchain developers, benefiting both themselves and the national economy as a whole.
It also discusses what Hughes calls a “trust deficit,” a lack of public trust in government institutions created after the 2008 financial crisis.
“the political and financial establishments, companies, and voluntary organisations that were once seen as pillars of the community, are often now held in little more than near contempt by citizens”
The Conservative MP explains that by embracing the distributed ledger technology (DLT), government can increase transparency in its institutions and grow public faith and trust once more. Hughes states:
“Blockchain provides traceability and clear provenance. There is no need to audit vast amounts of data, as the blockchain itself is the audit trail.”
The report goes on to discuss blockchain’s capacity to increase operational efficiency through the automation of labor-intensive processes, referring to a global survey by Cognizant, where 82% of retail professionals share this sentiment.
Citing the great benefits to banks, Hughes refers to a Santander Fintech report that shows costs associated with cross-border payments, regulatory compliance, and securities trading could see a reduction of up to $20 billion by 2022.
Most pertinent, are the references to other governments such as Sweden, which is predicted to save $100 million in their national land registry alone, by using the technology to automate the processes involved in fraud prevention.
Hughes also refers to the Dubai Blockchain Strategy, where it is predicted to eliminate 114 MTons of C02 emissions, through reallocating 25.1 million economically productive hours, and UAE’s Prime Minister claims it will:
“contribute to saving AED 11 billion (approximately USD $3 billion) spent annually on document processing alone”
The comprehensive report, identifies the social and environmental benefits of blockchain application on government systems and databases, highlighting the “particularly transformative effect on the NHS“, Hughes said:
“imagine if everyone had their own NHS record on blockchain” adding “results could surely be stored almost instantaneously, for the patient to see, as well as their GP… If everything could be tracked accurately in this manner, a complete picture of the patient’s health data would be provided, while removing so much of the current administrative burden.”
Further to it’s release, the British Prime Minister Theresa May has recommended that a digital copy of the report should be sent to every member of British Parliament for their consideration.