BLOCKCHAIN: Opportunities for Private Enterprises in Emerging Markets

Mobile networks, cloud-based services, and big-data analytics are already helping to reach thousands of previously unbanked customers with transaction accounts, savings products, and credit. But many emerging markets lack connectivity infrastructure and trusted institutions and counterparties. Distributed ledgers may provide some of the infrastructure these markets need. This nine-chapter contributed volume focuses attention on the potential of blockchain, and of distributed ledger technology (DLT) more generally, to address some of the economic and financial challenges that emerging markets face today. These challenges are many, and include Know-Your-Customer gaps, the de-risking by global financial institutions that prevents emerging markets from accessing the global financial system, and the costs and inefficiencies of processing remittances through the interlinked ledger system that is today’s correspondent banking network infrastructure. Various approaches using distributed ledger technology could provide solutions, as well as a new infrastructure for financial services in emerging markets. 
With thanks to World Bank Vice President Ceyla Pazarbasioglu, sherpa to Task Force member Kristalina Georgieva