Blockchain can keep Britain competitive after Brexit
This week UK Politicians began a series of evidence sessions exploring the impact blockchain could have on the UK and global economy. Witnesses informed Parliamentarians that blockchain technology has the potential to keep the UK, and London in particular, competitive as it leaves the EU.
The recently launched All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Blockchain met to hear evidence from sector leaders on the opportunities that blockchain and distributed ledger technologies (DLTs) will bring to UK industries and society as a whole.
MPs and Peers were told that Switzerland was stealing a march on distributed ledger technology by clarifying their legal framework to attract blockchain investors. The Parliamentarians were warned that if the UK did not capitalise on its longstanding robust legal culture to provide a “sandbox” for blockchain innovators, it risked being left behind.
Co-Chair of the Group, Grant Shapps MP, stated “It is clear that blockchain technology presents a huge opportunity for this country to deliver a range services faster, more effectively and securely. But it is also clear that we are in a race with the rest of the world to lead the way in this exciting space. If we do not support the many start-ups we have in this country with a clear legal framework to innovate in, the UK will miss out.”
Damien Moore MP, also a Co-Chair of the APPG, added “There is already significant uncertainty around how the UK continues to attract financial services after we have left the EU. Therefore it is absolutely vital we do everything we can to attract the real innovators to Britain. London is already a dynamic start-up hub, we must make sure that that continues and that other parts of the country can share in that success.”
CEO of Big Innovation Centre, a consultancy and think-tank that convenes the APPG, Birgitte Andersen was taken by the breadth of potential that blockchain presents, adding “We were joined by some of the real standard-bearers on this technology, and what was quite clear was their positive outlook for the potential the UK has to lead the way in blockchain. We have the talent, the skills, the infrastructure, and we have the rule of law culture to deliver responsible innovative technologies that can change the world.”
Notes to Editors
According to new statistics released by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, the UK’s digital sector accounted for 9.4% of all business in the country.
The APPG Blockchain evidence meeting heard from the following experts in blockchain:
- Helen Disney- CEO and Founder, Unblocked
- Chris Skinner- Author, The Finanser
- Dr Geoffrey Goodell- Senior Reacher Fellow, UCL
- Terry Igharoro- Founder and CEO, The InventoryClub
- Simon Tylor- Co-founder and Director of Blockchain, 11FS
About The Big Innovation Centre
The Big Innovation Centre is an Open Innovation Consultancy established in 2011. It provides thought leadership for big companies and public bodies to address shared economic challenges and raise their innovative capabilities. Big Innovation Centre is also currently the Secretariat for The All Party Parliamentary Groups on Artificial Intelligence (APPG AI), the All Party Parliamentary Groups on the Forth Industrial Revolution (APPG 4IR) and the All Party Parliamentary Group on Blockchain (APPG Blockchain).