IBM and U.S. Congressmen discuss Blockchain and Government
On 24 September, officials representing technology and legislation came together to discuss the collective benefits of adopting the Blockchain. Members of the tech giant, IBM met with the U.S. Congressional Blockchain Caucus to discuss the technology’s implementation in ID systems, payment mechanism, and supply chain.
The immediate precursor to this meeting was IBM’s recent report entitled, “The Impact of Blockchain for Government: Insights on Identity, Payments and Supply Chain” made with the members of the U.S. Congressional Blockchain Caucus.
Significant components enclosed within the report shed light on the increased administrative use of the blockchain. The report contains summaries of discussions with U.S. Congressmen Jared Polis, the author of “The Cryptocurrency Tax Fairness Act” proposing the removal of taxes below $600 on crypto-assets and David Schweikert, proponent of crypto-innovation, Jerry Cuomo, CTO IBM and Vice President for Blockchain Technology, and Thomas Hardjono, technical director at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).
The members of Congress have had three meetings with MIT and IBM about the need to harbor Blockchain Technology and to provide a regulatory trial and error structure to test out several solutions between the clashing forces of blockchain and administrative supervision prior to introduction in the market.
Jerry Cuomo, during the press call, said the even if blockchain is studied, “the whole day” it will prove futile if it is not brought into the market for the citizens to use. He emphasized that it was “time for the [U.S.] to start acting” on pushing Blockchain into the regular lives of the average American. He heralded, “Blockchain is ready for government, let’s get government ready for blockchain.”
Representative Polis, who had earlier proposed that his home-state of Colorado be made a “national hub for Blockchain innovation in business and government,” reiterated that the initial stages of “the promise of blockchain technology” is being exhibited now.
He stressed that there needs to be a conducive legal environment that will facilitate the flexibility of cryptocurrencies. Additionally, Polis mentioned, “the real lack of trust in centralized institutions” is a very real danger and one that the Blockchain can address.
“We want to make sure that people using cryptocurrencies won’t pay taxes for buying a cup of coffee or a magazine,” said Polis on the issue of crypto-taxation. Polis mentioned that tax holidays for crypto-startups is a “really big question.”
Two industries that would greatly benefit from the incorporation of blockchain technology would be medicine and social projects, said Representative David Schweikert. He further stressed the protection of data is imperative and the caucus’ partnership with institutions like MIT and the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) would greatly contribute to that endeavor.
Image via Shutterstock
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