Germany on chain: National Blockchain Strategy Released

Blockchain on the agenda of German government and ministries

It is great that the government is giving significant importance to this technology. Regardless of the content of the blockchain strategy, it is important for the development of the blockchain ecosystem that the federal government and several ministries are having “blockchain” now on their agenda. The reason is that for producing this blockchain strategy, dozens of people within the public administration had to understand the topic throughout multiple levels of hierarchies in various ministries.

  • Are German companies out there that have a strategy for artificial intelligence? Yes, quite some of them.
  • Is Germany having a national AI strategy? Yes.
  • Is Germany having a blockchain strategy now? Yes, since today.
  • Are German corporations having a blockchain strategy? No, nothing that has become public so far.

Focus on finance, crypto assets, securities

Apparently, the area of finance has some focus in the blockchain strategy with pretty clear tasks that will happen in the upcoming months and years. In very short, this is what will happen:

  1. Securities on chain: starting with debt instruments (i.e., Schuldverschreibungen) as first experiments to de-materialize securities.
  2. Euro on chain: E-Money rules are mentioned and therefore “recommended” to get the Euro on blockchain systems. Read more here.
  3. “Traditional” crypto assets such as Bitcoin or Ethereum etc.: basically allowed for institutional trade under new yet-to-be-specified BaFin license. Read more here.
  4. Private stable coins such as Libra, gold-backed tokens: will probably be blocked.
  1. Securities: green light.
  2. Euro on chain: green light.
  3. Bitcoin & Co.: green light.
  4. Private stable coins: red light.
  1. Germany Harshly Regulates Crypto Assets as of January 1, 2020: What are the Best Strategies for Blockchain Startups, FinTechs, Banks, Exchanges and Industrial Companies?
  2. Priorities for Europe and Germany: Both, the Euro and identities should run on the blockchain

Broad array of single measures

The blockchain strategy includes numerous research projects which have already been granted in the past, announcements for future research projects, plans for experiments, potential PoCs in the area of public administration, and round tables on specific issues.

Some interesting aspects

It is interesting that the blockchain strategy puts some focus on areas which are not in the main focus within the blockchain ecosystem so far: For example, it is mentioned in the document that blockchain transactions should be used to provide evidence from a legal perspective. So, for example, blockchain transactions could then be used at court when proving something. The astute lawyer now says that the existing law is sufficient and a lawyer could anyway “argue” that during a trial a blockchain transaction could be used at court. But, frankly, it makes things much easier for thousands of lawyers, hundreds of judges and dozens of courts if the federal government clearly says that blockchain transaction are allows as proofs at court.

Missing aspects which would be much bolder

A government naturally has control over several institutions and over a significant share of the infrastructure of a country. Here, the strategy could have gone further, for example, addressing the following areas: identity on chain, commercial register, notaries, elections, GmbH-shares on chain.

Conclusion

If we estimate the money being invested in all these measures on behalf of the government, it is reasonable to argue that all elements of the blockchain strategy appear to be not too “expensive”. Yes, money will be spent on all these measures but the total investment is — compared to other areas where money is being spent currently — quite low.

Further readings on some of these aspects:

Remarks

If you like this article, we would be happy if you forward it to your colleagues or share it on social networks. If you are an expert in the field and want to criticize or endorse the article or some of its parts, feel free to leave a private note here or contextually and we will respond or address.

  • Blockchain knowledge: We wrote a Medium article on how to acquire the necessary blockchain knowledge within a workload of 10 working days.
  • Our two blockchain books: We have edited two books on how blockchain will change our society (Amazon link) in general and the everything related to finance (Amazon link) in particular. Both books are available in print and for Kindle — currently in German and soon in English. The authors have been more than 20 well-known blockchain experts in startups, corporations and the government from Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Liechtenstein — all contributing their expertise to these two books.
Our two books: the first one on blockchain and the society and the second one on blockchain and finance

Authors

Prof. Dr. Philipp Sandner has founded the Frankfurt School Blockchain Center (FSBC). From 2018 to 2021, he was ranked among the “top 30” economists by the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (FAZ), a major newspaper in Germany. He has been a member of the FinTech Council and the Digital Finance Forum of the Federal Ministry of Finance in Germany. He is also on the Board of Directors of FiveT Fintech Fund, 21e6 Capital and Blockchain Founders Group — companies active in venture capital financing for blockchain startups and crypto asset investment management. The expertise of Prof. Sandner includes crypto assets such as Bitcoin and Ethereum, decentralized finance (DeFi), the digital euro, tokenization of assets, and digital identity. You can contact him via mail (m@philippsandner.de) via LinkedIn or follow him on Twitter (@philippsandner).

--

--

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store
Philipp Sandner

Philipp Sandner

4.4K Followers

Professor | Lecturer | Author | Investor | Frankfurt School Blockchain Center