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Parliamentary questions
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7 February 2017
E-009012/2016(ASW)
Answer given by Vice-President Ansip on behalf of the Commission
Question reference: E-009012/2016

Distributed ledger technology's (DLT) almost limitless list of potential use cases makes it both very promising and challenging. Beyond financial services applications, which are being explored by banks and financial institutions, many other sectors are piloting with the technology.

The Commission is actively monitoring Blockchain and DLT developments. Following the Honourable Member of the European Parliament's Von Weizsäcker's report on Virtual Currencies, the Commission set up a FinTech Task Force. A work stream is dedicated to explore DLT benefits and challenges as well as fields for application in financial services(1).

Beyond financial services, the Commission services are actively reflecting on possible pilot projects to foster decentralised innovation ecosystems and help reshape interactions between consumers, producers, creators and among citizens, businesses and administrations to the end benefit of society.

The Commission is already supporting DLT-enabled projects (DECODE, D-Cent, MyHealth MyData). Support activities are going to increase in the coming months (e.g. Decentralised Data Management). A study will be launched to investigate how DLT can help in reshaping public services and preparing for EU specific DLT actions to address relevant EU challenges.

The Commission will organise a kick-off conference with the European Parliament on Demystifying Blockchain and a series of workshops to look at Blockchain developments and use case applications.

As part of the Start-up and Scale-Up Initiative(2), the Commission will investigate how to develop experimentation frameworks enabling innovation. DLT can be considered as offering innovative solutions to existing and emerging challenges.

(1)E.g. post-trade, payments, insurance, etc.
(2)http://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/PDF/?uri=CELEX:52016DC0733&from=EN

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