What has happened?
The European Commission has partnered with an ethereum start up to create an EU Blockchain Observatory and Forum.
What does this mean?
Launched a few days ago, the project aims to highlight key developments of the blockchain technology, promote EU actors and reinforce engagement with stakeholders involved in blockchain activities.
It also aims to build on existing initiatives, consolidate expertise as well as improve business processes and enable new business models in the EU.
The Commission sees blockchain technologies "as a major breakthrough, as they bring about high levels of traceability and security in economic transactions online".
It has been funding blockchain projects since 2013 and, for the next two years, it plans to fund such projects for up to €340 million.
Following a call for tenders last year, ConsenSys was selected as partner to support the Observatory's outreach in Europe.
"As an important actor in the blockchain community, ConsenSys will bring strong commitment to blockchain development, solid expertise and connections with the global blockchain ecosystem, and an entrepreneurial approach to engage with stakeholders and experts in the EU and worldwide," the Commission's statement said.
ConsenSys, a software foundry that develops decentralised software services that operate for the ethereum blockchain, was founded by Joseph Lubin in 2015.
Commissioner for the Digital Economy and Society Mariya Gabriel said:
"I see blockchain as a game changer and I want Europe to be at the forefront of its development. We need to establish the right enabling environment - a Digital Single Market for blockchain so that all citizens can benefit, instead of a patchwork of initiatives. The EU Blockchain Observatory and Forum is an important step in that direction."
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