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Dubai’s Largest Bank Is Piloting a Blockchain Project

Updated: Oct 12, 2016 1:58 PM UTC

Dubai's largest bank, Emirates NBD, is working with India's ICICI on a pilot project to use blockchain technology for global remittances and trade finance, in what they say is a first for banks from the Middle East and India.

The project showed banks can significantly cut transaction cots and time, while demonstrating a near real-time transfer of invoices and purchase orders for trade finance purchases, Emirates NBD said.

Blockchain, which originates from digital currency bitcoin, works as an electronic transaction-processing and record-keeping system that allows all parties to track information through a secure network, with no need for third-party verification.

Several banks have announced plans to use the technology, with Microsoft (msft) joining forces with Bank of America Merrill Lynch to build and test the technology and create a blockchain-based framework that could eventually be sold to other businesses, the pair said last month.

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Emirates NBD and ICICI, India's largest private sector bank by consolidated assets, say they are partnering with Infosys Finacle (infy) to trial blockchain technology across multiple banking and payment services.