Dubai is seeking to gain a reputation for financial technology with a plan to use a blockchain system for government documents.
A form of distributed ledger technology, blockchain gained notoriety as the database system underlying Bitcoin and other crypto-currencies.
According to report by the UAE's official news agency, the proposed blockchain system will allow personal and business data in the country to be accessible to all government entities, banks, insurance firms and others by 2020.
"We have directed the Dubai Future Foundation to oversee the strategy and to benefit from the expertise it accumulated through the initiatives of the Global Blockchain Council," said Hamdan Al Maktoum, the crown prince of Dubai, in the report.
Although it is closely associated with Bitcoin, blockchain technology has applications for a wide range of activities beyond crypto-currencies. These include the clearing and settlement of transactions, collecting royalties on music or videos, and management of dividend payments.
©2016 funds global mena