A number of financial regulators from across the globe are forming a new alliance to facilitate the growth of financial technologies such as blockchain and distributed ledger technology (DLT).
The U.K.’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), which spearheaded one of the world’s first fintech sandbox programs, announced the Global Financial Innovation Network (GFIN) initiative on Tuesday, alongside 11 other member regulators from jurisdictions such as Hong Kong, the U.S., Australia and Abu Dhabi.
GFIN will primarily serve as a network of regulators to discuss policies regarding financial technologies, the statement indicates, as well as to develop a “global sandbox” that will give firms with “an environment in which to trial cross-border solutions.”
While the paper offers few details on how the regulators’ plan to create a supervised environment for blockchain startups, the FCA said the new alliance follows a consultation effort in February on the idea of an international sandbox.
Among the 50 responses it received at the time, the FCA said one key theme focused on how regulators around the world can work together to pilot cross-border payments based on DLT and how to regulate initial coin offerings, which often extend beyond borders.
In fact, several members of GFIN, including the Monetary Authority of Singapore, Hong Kong Monetary Authority and Abu Dhabi Global Market, are already working on cross-border payment corridors built with DLT.
Along with the announcement, the group jointly published a consultation paper seeking public feedback on the GFIN initiative by Oct. 14.
Just last month, the FCA also granted 11 blockchain crypto-related startups to the fourth cohort of its sandbox program – almost 40 percent of the 29 firms accepted – which can now trial their products in a regulated environment.