Russian payments provider Qiwi has revealed it wants to launch a domestic blockchain consortium it compared to the 44-member banking consortium R3CEV.

In statements today, Qiwi CTO Alexei Arkhipov expanded on his company’s work with blockchain tech, reiterating how the company has developed its own prototypes for payments processing. Originally nicknamed ‘BitRuble’, the project caused concern among local regulators, who have been moving to formally ban the use of blockchain-based digital currencies.

Arkhipov, however, said that sentiment regarding the technology is now changing, and that Qiwi is looking to create a consortium of regional banks, financial institutions and enterprise businesses that could band together to further explore the emerging technology.

Arkhipov said:

“We see that the debate on the blockchain in Russia has become more substantive and constructive. By ​​creating a consortium similar to R3 … many companies will have the opportunity not only to investigate but also to test existing prototypes.”

If successful, the effort would mirror similar work underway globally. For example, the Dubai government announced the creation of the Global Blockchain Council (GBC) in May, a 30-member group of tech businesses, startups and government agencies.

To date, R3 has been perhaps the most visible of these efforts, uniting 44 global financial institutions on trials that have so far replicated commercial paper trading and trialed private versions of blockchain technology from the Ethereum project.

Qiwi logo image via Facebook

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