The UN has invited the Liechtenstein government to New York to present the Blockchain Act. International cooperation is paramount when building a functioning blockchain ecosystem. No government can do it alone.

Liechtenstein’s Blockchain Act continues to draw the attention of international decision-makers. Thomas Dünser, Head of the Office for Financial Market Innovation, was heading a panel at the United Nations Headquarters in New York to explain the details of Liechtenstein’s new legislation. 

Dünser presented an “introduction to the basics of the token economy” to 80 participants who wanted to understand more about Liechtenstein’s legislative approach. As part of the presentation, Thomas Nägele from the Crypto Country Association Liechtenstein and Aviya Arika from the Israeli Blockchain Association laid out the economic opportunities of digitization and how due diligence can combat abuse of the technology.

Building up a blockchain infrastructure needs international cooperation

Liechtenstein has repeatedly stated its intention to contribute to the build-up of a global blockchain ecosystem that expands far beyond its own borders. Considering the global nature of blockchain technology, stand-alone solutions in single countries are not going to work in the long term.

At its core, blockchain is about decentralization and connecting multiple entities on one single network. Thus, a blockchain ecosystem needs the international community to work together. Otherwise, we are just rebuilding more or less the same siloed system that we already have, only using another technology.

That’s why it matters that the United Nations reach out to benefit from the expertise that Liechtenstein has gathered within the blockchain domain over the past years. Likewise, Liechtenstein needs to engage in this dialogue and continue to be a driving force in the global movement.

So far, Liechtenstein has lived up to this role. The government has stated several times to enter into a dialogue and exchange of experience with the United Nations. With success: After the panel in New York, a government representative said Liechtenstein was able to present itself as an “innovative and future-oriented financial center, while at the same time providing an important impetus for the UN to deal in depth with the opportunities offered by the token economy.”

Apart from the UN, several single countries have expressed their interest in Liechtenstein’s Blockchain Act as well. Germany’s Minister of the Economy Peter Altmeier visited Liechtenstein last month and asked for an exchange of knowledge and experience.

Blockchain can contribute to the UN’s sustainability goals

The UN is interested in accelerating the build-up of blockchain infrastructure for several reasons. In particular, the technology can help the UN achieve its Sustainable Development Goals. Those include three core domains: economic growth, social inclusion, and environmental protection. Blockchain can help to advance all three areas.

By enabling transparent supply chain solutions, consumers can get deeper insights into where their products originated from, forcing producers to stick to legal and ethical guidelines.

Decentralized currencies, blockchain-based financial products, and digital identity systems could open the global financial system for currently underbanked parts of the population.

A blockchain-based voting system could foster trust in democracy, especially in those countries where voter fraud is a challenge.

Blockchain can also have an enormous environmental impact by enabling the tracking of renewable energy certificates, streamlining the efficiency of energy grids, adding additional public oversight to corporations’ and governments’ carbon footprint, and one day we might even be able to use a decentralized P2P energy trading platform.

All of this needs international corporation by businesses, governments, and international organizations. That’s why it’s so important that Liechtenstein is presenting its Blockchain Act at the UN in New York, even if it’s just a side note in the newspapers.

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