RIYADH: The Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority (SAMA) used blockchain technology to deposit part of a SR50 billion funding package for the banking system.

It comes as the regulator seeks to boost the role of technology in the financial sector as it invests heavily in digital banking services.

Earlier it established a regulatory sandbox as a testing ground for local and international firms wanting to test new digital solutions.

Michael O’Loughlin, a financial expert and Forbes contributor, said SAMA’s move was “a huge step in the right direction”, adding that many central banks around the world were engaged in blockchain-related research.

“Blockchain technology if implemented properly has the potential to improve banking operations significantly,” he said.

The benefits of deploying blockchain in banking operations range from increased security to the ability to track and trace money.

Blockchain can also contribute to reducing costs and increasing the speed of transactions.

“Reduced fraud, increased security and quick and hassle-free transactions are what banks want, customers want the same thing too. Blockchain promises to deliver just that, after 10 years of proofs of concept, the world is ready to see financial services embrace the tech” O’Loughlin added.

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