The Minister of Finance of the United Kingdom, Phillip Hammond, is proposing this week to the use of Blockchain technology for the Management of the threat of domestic Irish border. While appropriate proposals for the management of customs and border control, hover for some time in the room, which he earned for harsh criticism – right? The use of Blockchain technologies, to wave away from, in principle, is the wrong way, because the real challenges are in the house: The Brexit negotiations boil – a hard Brexit looms on the horizon.
Six months, then the biggest political spectre of the European post-war history will reveal his shape. After the British had in June 2016 your destiny even in the Hand, is in March 2019, the exit of the United Kingdom from the European Union. What Form, whether hard or soft Brexit, whether with or without access to the internal market, is being discussed behind the Scenes are still hot. Above all, it seethes with the question of how the should be handled within the border in Ireland in the future.
Still can move the Irish and the Northern Irish. The government in London, however, aims at a withdrawal from the customs Union, to be able to in the future own trade agreements. The unpopular result, border controls between Ireland and the UK-exclave in the North.
The British government is now trying her Tunlichstes to bypass this, or at least make it as smooth as possible. Border plants you want to avoid absolutely.
Hammond: the Blockchain is the “most obvious solution” to the border dispute
At the party Congress of the Conservative Tories the UK has proposed to Finance Minister, Phillip Hammond, now at the beginning of the week, the emerging problems of possible counter internal tariffs on green island with probably the most contemporary wonder weapon – the Blockchain.
So new technologies could play a role in helping to overcome the border problems, the British Treasurer.
“I don’t claim to be an expert. But probably the most obvious technology for this is the Blockchain.“
From the ranks of his Ministry also:
“These technological solutions will support our efforts against a physical infrastructure at the border.”
The Press Echo: “Complete Nonsense.”
In the grid and press Hammond blows against the proposal, however, staunch opposition. He is accused, to conduct showmanship and on the running Board of the global Blockchain-hype ride.
As it is stated by the British BBC, Hammond has “no idea whether the Distributed Ledger technologies, and adopting is actually a practical solution”. The Tech-Portal Wired writes, Hammond’s statement was “funny”, but follows the “no sense”. The Irish Times called his statement “complete nonsense” and quoted a security expert Sadhbh McCarthy:
“If the issue of borders would create simply out of the world, think that the United States would build, with all its resources is actually a wall to Mexico?”
What sounds polemical, it is of course legitimate criticism. As “seamlessly” as the government in London wished for, is not the limit by Hammonds Blockchain-Epiphany.
Controls product exports by DLT would be easier and clearer than traditionally on paper. In the air would dissolve them.
Without staff on the ground, and thus “physical” border controls, we will not get along. Neither camera surveillance, automated controls of number change signs, or artificial intelligence, or Blockchain.
More than Zeitgeist – the Blockchain-the benefits could make it affordable
But is that enough to discard the use of the Blockchain for the management of the task of the Century ‘Brexit’? Not in the least.
The technology to deny the value, not only in the case of an agreement for the customs conditions on the Irish inland border is premature. Also when it comes to the hard Brexit – the exit without the agreement, to the sudden departure of the internal market, customs Union and the Schengen area – it could be the Blockchain as useful.
Then, a complete reorganisation of the external relations between the EU and the British is due. In the Management of this as yet undetermined interaction the advantages of the Blockchain would attract.
For example, the consulting company PwC and the Reply to show, in principle, pioneering advantages in the use of Technology in the field of customs and border controls. Smart Contracts and Blockchain Supply Chains, for example, could help to collect customs data and to speed up the goods transport. In addition, they help to save administrative costs and to maintain mutual Standards, for example in Reports from the past year.
The consultants of PWC argue in this context that DLTs may in the future facilitate use of digital identities, personal checks and Visa Checks. Because it comes about to exit from the Schengen area, tourists, commuters and foreign companies in the future, facing great challenges, with a view to labour and immigration regulations.
Blockchain or not – a question of withdrawal
Such technology are faced with solutions meanwhile, with major hurdles – such as all of the legal bases for their use are missing. The Blockchain tired as a Zeitgeist away smile, but seems to be not only the ignorantere, but with a view on the Strengths of the technologies, also the wrong way. Rather, The Blockchain could prove its worth in consequence of the Brexits at the highest diplomatic parquet.
If, however, next March, even a use of the Blockchain ultimately depends also on the question of whether and what kind of agreement the EU and the British meet.
A hard Brexit occurs, the use of DLTs at the common borders, while not entirely off the table, political priorities are likely to shift, however, with a view to crisis management. For technical Innovation, little space would remain, then, despite the open attitude of the United Kingdom. Blockchain enthusiasts in government circles would have to hire back.
Because a hard-Brexit – from the hard-liners in the United Kingdom and the political speculators in the May-government apart – no one wants to negotiate these days as never before. The EU is preparing meanwhile, however, the worst of it. Until the next summit in November, new proposals are on the table – otherwise the time frame is not more, it is said in Brussels and Strasbourg.
It remains to hope that prudence prevails on both sides. Because a hard Brexit would not only slow down the Blockchain-progress in the United Kingdom. A hard Brexit would be politically, the biggest step backwards in the history of the European Union. It would be a return to the diplomatic stone age.