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New Swiss Industry Body Created To Promote Use Of Blockchain In Capital Markets

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The Swiss industry created a new independent body called the Capital Markets and Technology Association (CMTA) to promote the use of new technologies such as blockchain in the capital markets.

The CMTA, with its registered office in Geneva, would provide a platform to create open industry standards around issuing, distributing and trading securities in the form of digital tokens using distributed ledger technologies.

The major participants in CMTA are law firm Lenz & Staehelin, online banker Swissquote Bank Ltd., banking software firm Temenos. James Larus, Dean of Swiss technical university EPFL's School of Computer and Communication Sciences, will also be joining the committee.

"The blockchain technology has the potential to reduce the complexity of the capital markets system and lower the barrier of entry for start-ups. The current lack of legal certainty is slowing - and potentially compromising - its development in this field," says Jacques Iffland, CMTA's chair, and partner at Lenz & Staehelin.

The CMTA will function as a not-for-profit, non-governmental association to help new or established companies, businesses and start-ups to use new technologies such as blockchain and leverage digitalization to facilitate access funding and raise capital securely and efficiently.

The trade body will also work towards creating a set of industry-supported, open standards and tool kits that can be used by these companies.

Further, the combination of Switzerland's regulatory framework with new technologies will simplify the way companies distribute their securities and raise capital as well as investors acquire and trade these assets.

"Temenos is committed to using new technologies to make banking better. We see the possibility for distributed ledger technologies to simplify banking value chains, speeding up customer fulfilment, lowering costs and democratizing financial services," comments David Arnott, CEO of Temenos.

Switzerland, one of the richest countries in the world, is among the first countries to chalk out ICO-specific regulations for local start-ups that are looking to raise capital through ICOs.

The Zug province in Switzerland has developed into a "crypto-valley," hosting several firms dealing in cryptocurrencies and blockchain business.

Staying on Zug, the city will run a pilot for a municipal voting system, which will be powered by blockchain technology, using the city's current digital ID (eID) system later in June.

by RTTNews Staff Writer

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