The Kaliningrad district in Russia will collaborate with state-owned development bank Vnesheconombank (VEB) to implement blockchain-based projects for social payments, the regional government said in a press release.
At the recent two-day Russian Investment Forum in Sochi, the government of Kaliningrad and VEB entered into a cooperation agreement, which was signed by VEB chairman Sergey Gorkov and district governor Anton Alikhanov.
“We are confident that Vnesheconombank’s expertise in the area of blockchain will enable us to improve the quality of management decisions in the region,” Alikhanov said.
The parties intend to adopt blockchain and other modern IT solutions in the Kaliningrad region, which is located between Poland and Lithuania. The distributed ledger technology will be applied to social payments and electronic services, among others.
“The Kaliningrad region is one of the most active subjects of the Russian Federation in terms of implementation of innovative technologies that support the development of Russia’s digital economy.”
He also said that the use of new technologies allows supporting social services by increasing transparency, reducing unnecessary bureaucracy, and making these accessible to citizens. Besides, the introduction of blockchain would cut costs which, according to him, amount to trillions of rubles on a national scale.
VEB is owned by the Russian government and was created to provide funding for projects focused on developing the local economy. It does not offer retail services. VEB, often called the Russian Development Bank, is involved in a number of blockchain projects.
Earlier, VEB was recommended by Moscow for participation in a blockchain experiment focused on the data in the state real estate register. Russia’s largest bank, Sberbank, is in charge of this project.