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Barbadians are being urged to open their minds to the phenomenal opportunities which blockchain technology and its associated products can bring.

The encouragement came today from Minister of Industry, International Business, Commerce and Business Development, Donville Inniss, as he addressed the Barbados International Business Association’s (BIBA) FinTech Seminar at the Lloyd Erskine Sandiford Centre, Two Mile Hill, St. Michael.

Acknowledging that the country needed more “disruptive” technology and technologists in its midst, he stressed: “We need to shake some things to the core, think and act outside of the box and do this much more. As a nation, we are too laid back and too focused on maintaining the status quo. We need to be bolder and imaginative.”

Describing blockchain technology and its associated cryptocurrency arena as the most exciting, innovative and disruptive technology in the past decade and a half, Minister Inniss said: “As I reflect on the evolution of blockchain technology, I cannot help but occasionally smile at what I consider to be the underlying political philosophy underpinning it – less Government involvement, less state control (that is lack of Central Bank involvement) and, of course, self-regulation”.

Pointing out that blockchain was derived from the ‘blocks of information that are added to the distributed ledger ‘the chain’ based on certain criteria, the Industry Minister said this was set to further positively disrupt our lives and our economies. He also noted that from a technological perspective, peer to peer technology, greater security and a global reach were the fundamental tenets of blockchain technology.

Participants and others in the financial and international business sectors were, therefore, urged to open their minds to also developing global solutions given the many uses of this technology, which the Minister said extended to dealing with medical records, payment processing and supply chain management.

“For me what is important is that we get our technologically-minded Bajans to get cracking on finding solutions and hence immense opportunities in these areas – seeing certainly the world as our oyster. My Ministry is prepared to invest in our youth who dare to find global solutions in a technology based manner because I am satisfied that such can help quickly transform this nation,” he assured.

Mr. Inniss also registered his satisfaction with the evolution of FinTech, over the past two decades, urging them to look for other avenues in which to develop their products and services.

“You must now be bold and better able to facilitate our younger minds in the development and servicing of FinTech products. I want to see this island providing more technology solutions for global enterprise as opposed to just being users of other people’s technology”, the Minister said.


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