Fin­tech Meetup of Asia-pa­cific Ex­ec­u­tives Fo­rum held at Hil­ton Colombo

Daily Mirror (Sri Lanka) - - FINANCE -

Fin­tech Meetup of the Asi­apa­cific Ex­ec­u­tives Fo­rum was held at Hil­ton Colombo re­cently.

The fo­rum is jointly or­gan­ised by Colorado, Usa-based Amer­i­can Academy of Project Man­age­ment (AAPM) and Global Academy of Fi­nance and Man­age­ment (GAFM), in col­lab­o­ra­tion with In­ter­stel­lar Strate­gic Part­ners and a num­ber of other in­sti­tu­tions.

At the fo­rum, form­ing the Fin­tech As­so­ci­a­tion of Sri Lanka was ini­ti­ated.

Aus­tralia-based Fin­tech Con­sul­tant An­drew Holmes in his key­note speech came out with a num­ber of cryp­tocur­rency and blockchain-re­lated is­sues.

Cen­tral Bank As­sis­tant Gover­nor Ananda Jay­alath ex­plained the reg­u­la­tory role of the Cen­tral Bank on fin­tech.

Sri Lanka-based Ger­man hote­lier Dr. Di­et­mar Do­er­ing, for­mer Fed­er­a­tion of Cham­ber of Com­merce and In­dus­try of Sri Lanka and Amer­i­can Cham­ber of Com­merce Sri Lanka Pres­i­dent and TJ As­so­ciates Man­ag­ing Part­ner Dr. Tissa Jayaweera, film­maker and Asian Avi­a­tion Cen­tre Chair­man Chan­dran Rut­nam and Pub­lic Fi­nance Spe­cial­ist Ri­fas Raseek also par­tic­i­pated in the panel dis­cus­sion.

AAPM/GAFM Rep­re­sen­ta­tive in Sri Lanka and the Mal­dives Ra­jku­mar Kana­gasingam mod­er­ated the fo­rum ses­sion.

Holmes in his key­note speech ex­plained the con­cept of blockchain and its un­der­ly­ing tech­nol­ogy.

He high­lighted the im­por­tance to dis­tin­guish be­tween cryp­tocur­rency dig­i­tal as­sets and blockchain, clear­ing the com­mon mis­con­cep­tions held by the pub­lic that the two were the same.

Holmes said the tech­nol­ogy’s rev­o­lu­tion­ary as­pect lies in its abil­ity to en­able two par­ties to trans­act with each other di­rectly. In the cur­rent sys­tems, a third party is re­quired to me­di­ate trans­ac­tions. This third party, in most cases, main­tains the record keep­ing and per­forms the ac­tiv­ity in re­la­tion to ver­i­fi­ca­tion and fa­cil­i­ta­tion. The blockchain does these au­to­mat­i­cally with­out the need for the third party.

He fur­ther stated to ex­em­plify its po­ten­tial, one can think of Pickme or Airbnb op­er­at­ing with­out the or­gan­i­sa­tion. The blockchain could con­nect both the ser­vice provider and re­questor di­rectly. This would re­duce costs to both par­ties sig­nif­i­cantly by by­pass­ing high mid­dle­men fees and pro­mote true free mar­ket de­mand and sup­ply.

Holmes high­lighted, since blockchain’s de­but with its ap­pli­ca­tion for bit­coin, there has been some up­grades to its fea­tures. One of the most sig­nif­i­cant ad­vances has been the abil­ity to ‘pro­gramme’ the blockchain. This abil­ity to spec­ify con­di­tions and pro­duce de­sired out­comes when cer­tain cri­te­ria have been met is termed as ‘smart con­tracts’. Ethereum is the world’s first smart con­tract plat­form; if bit­coin is a cal­cu­la­tor you can think of Ethereum as a per­sonal com­puter. Smart con­tracts are go­ing to be used heav­ily in the fu­ture to au­to­mate ac­tiv­ity and gov­er­nance.

He ex­claimed, “Imag­ine the abil­ity to pro­gramme money and how it should be­have or cre­ate your own ‘will’ that is gov­erned by a pro­gramme that will ex­e­cute ex­actly as you spec­i­fied - even a world where you can rent your mo­bile phone or com­put­ers pro­cess­ing power to earn some pas­sive in­come.”

Holmes said these are some of the pos­si­bil­i­ties the blockchain is go­ing to fa­cil­i­tate with­out the need of cen­tral­ized bod­ies gov­ern­ing them.

And he con­cluded all of these ac­tiv­i­ties will be oc­cur­ring by our col­lec­tive con­tri­bu­tions with the help of our own de­vices.

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