Contrary to the widespread belief that blockchain is solely related to Bitcoin, in reality, the technology can be utilized in many different sectors through a wide number of applications. The limited and constrained viewpoint about the scope of the blockchain is hurting its prospects of application in Pakistan.
What is Blockchain?
Just so you know, the blockchain consists of the uniquely distributed digital ledger which can be utilized in different manners to effectively transform the ways information is recorded, organized, shared and analyzed for confirming the authentication. The fundamental principle of blockchain technology is to transfer the centrally-controlled structure to a decentralized structure which eliminates the requirement of any middleman or intermediary in the process. Take, for example, a trading platform or payment transfer system which with the help of blockchain technology can be operated by traders or customers themselves, thereby eliminating the role of any middleman in the process. This means the customers become the owners of the process in a way and are responsible for taking care of the system and processes.
Global Adoption of Blockchain
Many developed countries across the globe have already started using the blockchain to improve the operations in the various sectors including the supply chain, power generation, energy sector, financial transactions, etc. Even the governments have started using blockchain in order to solve the long-standing problems related to the public sector in the areas of healthcare, sanitation, infrastructure building, and banking system. The government authorities and the various civic agencies are focusing their energy to develop blockchain applications in the concerned areas to solve the issues related to the larger good of the people. Commenting on the usage of the blockchain, Chief Technology Officer, Miranz Technology, Mudaser Iqbal told The Express Tribune that it is now possible with the help of technology to monitor the public and private information which, in turn, help the governments to become more transparent and effective. Iqbal noted that as blockchain effectively removes the role of a middle man, the tempering of the records or for that matter, any information cannot be done once the transaction is registered with the system. He further added that the objective behind the use of blockchain is to reduce or prevent any kind of lapses in the system and help elevate the level of confidence the people have on the government and allied agencies. Many government institutions across the globe have implemented the blockchain technology, and they are getting hugely benefited from its adoption. The faith of the countrymen has enhanced in their governments, and this has positively affected governments’ organizing and working structure.
One can have the examples of the UK, Switzerland, Estonia, Chile, and Georgia which have successfully implemented blockchain technology to launch digital identifications for various purposes including land registry, ex-residents, distributed ledger, etc. Taking a cue from these countries, experts believe that Pakistan can also effectively use the blockchain to address many problems in the area of the public domain. The former chairman of Punjab Information Technology Board, Dr. Umar Saif, said that in both private and public sector in Pakistan, there is a lot of scope to implement blockchain technology. He noted that some development in this regard has already been done with the e-stamp introduction; however, a lot needs to be done in the future to harness the benefits of the technology.
Application in Real Estate and Education Sector
The real estate sector can be revolutionized with the introduction of the blockchain. For example, the problems in the domain of the registration process and title deeds can be overcome if all these processes and transfers would be on the blockchain. This would allow everyone to know who the exact owner of the land was and also update whether the land was sold or not. The use of distributed ledger, in this case, will help to ease various issues related to inheritance, selling and buying of property, fraudulent cases of ownership, and other allied problems. Similarly, the blockchain technology can be utilized in the area of academic certification to tackle the menace of fake degrees and certification issues.
Iqbal further added that blockchain technology could be utilized for improving the tax system in the country and the successful application of technology can even minimize the role of the Federal Board of Revenue. He noted that despite all the advantages, the application of blockchain is expensive in nature and requires a considerable amount of budget. This calls for a judicious decision on the part of the government to identify the critical areas where the adoption of blockchain technology will bring most benefits to the country. The government can also partially implement blockchain if it lacks in the budget for the full adoption.
The experts feel that the adoption of blockchain in Pakistan will pave the way for transparency, dependability, and security in the government which has been missing for a long time now. The applications of blockchain can also enhance the confidence of the general public in the governance which bodes well for the country in long terms. Even from the viewpoint of lucrative career prospects, the blockchain technology is rising the ladder of popularity as more and more countries are now demanding experts in the area of the blockchain.