The First Belgian Node of Europe’s Blockchain Services Infrastructure Goes Live
On February 12, the first Belgian node of the European Blockchain Services Infrastructure (EBSI) went live. EBSI aims to facilitate cross-border public services within the European Union (EU), with privacy and security.
In 2018, EU member states formed the European Blockchain Partnership (EBP) to support and develop the EBSI. Recently, the EBP has 30 signatory countries, all the EU states as well as non-EU members Norway, UK, and Liechtenstein.
The Belgian node was developed by internet provider Belnet. IT services company Smals is now promoting the second EBSI node for Belgium.
The EBSI is envisioned as a network of blockchain nodes over Europe, to promote use cases guided by the European Commission.
Currently, the EBSI has four particular use cases, each headed by a member state and a user group. Use cases involve notarization to prove data integrity, European self-sovereign identity to give users control over their data, blockchain diplomas for trusted education credentials, and trusted data sharing for cross-border tax, trade, and other systems.
While the latest use cases are being revealed, the EBP Policy Group is assumed to declare new use cases for 2020 soon.
Later this year, the EBSI will become a CEF ( Connecting Europe Facility) Building Block and offer specifications, reusable software, and services to member nations and administrations.
CEF Building Blocks is an EU initiative to bestow digital services developed under the supervision of the European Commission. It’s planning a single digital market for all EU member nations and will save costs and time for the development of services.
The European Commission works a minimum number of EBSI nodes at the European level. The member states will work the EBSI nodes at a national level. Belnet states it supposes 30 other nodes to be set up by different EU members, building a network of blockchain nodes covering Europe. All these nodes will be capable of validating data and creating blocks.
The EC (European Commission) is pushing for blockchain use cases and is also investing in a few projects in member countries. EC granted €100 million for a blockchain and AI program launched by the European Investment Fund (EIF), a few months ago.
The European Union Science Hub currently issued a report ‘Blockchain Now and Tomorrow’, which examines various use cases.
Last year, the ESA (European Space Agency) declared it was investing in blockchain firm SpaceChain UK which intends to develop an open-source satellite network.
The ESA currently associated with UK firm Hypervine to integrate satellite data and blockchain technology for mining and extraction activities.
Meantime, the European Central Bank is examining digital euro as a wholesale and retail central bank digital currency and is testing with blockchain.