Qatar-based Commercial Bank is the first in the nation to use blockchain technology to process a series of cross-border payments in partnership with several banks in the region.

In a recent pilot using cloud-based ledger technology, Commercial Bank created a blockchain network to send bank-to-bank transfers in near real time to regional peers including ABank in Turkey, National Bank of Oman, United Arab Bank in UAE and other banks in Egypt and India, the bank said in a press release.

The test proved Commercial Bank’s ability to use blockchain to conduct secure, low-cost cross-border payments without involving intermediaries, according to the bank.

Bloomberg News
Bloomberg News

Commercial Bank is now seeking approvals from Qatar Central Bank to extend its blockchain network to other financial institution partners in corridors with high remittance volume, including the Philippines, Nepal, Egypt, Pakistan and UAE to enable cash transfers using its new system, the bank said in the release.

In its next phase of blockchain development initiatives, Commercial Bank intends to extend the technology to support paperless exchange of legal and trade documents including purchase orders and invoices, the bank added.

“Blockchain has huge potential to change the financial services sector and we are proud to be the pioneers in leading this change in Qatar by introducing yet another new technology to provide the best client experience for all our customers,” said Joseph Abraham, Commercial Bank’s CEO, in the release.

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