Australian PM considers the importance of Blockchain during COVID

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Biz Blocks by Michael Bacina, Partner Piper Alderman Lawyers | Jun 19/2020

On 15 June 2020 the Prime Minister of Australia, the Hon Scott Morrison, announced that he is bringing the existing Deregulation Taskforceinto the Department of the Prime Minister as part of the Job Maker Program with a substantially increased potential of adopting blockchain for Regtech and business efficiency.

The Prime Minister said:

“COVID has shown that our laws have not kept pace with digital technology when it comes to business communications. For example, by requiring businesses to use paper for storing information instead of using electronic delivery or adopting new technologies such as Blockchain … Today I am announcing that I am bringing the deregulation task force into my own hands into my own department… as part of the Job Maker agenda.”

In a statement released on the same date, the Federal Government has identified one of the priorities of the Deregulation Taskforce as modernising business communications.

This includes removing impediments to using electronic communications to satisfy legal obligations, examining the Electronic Transactions Act 1999 and other legislation that can be made technology neutral.

The Deregulation Taskforce was tasked in July 2019 to drive regulatory reform and deregulation to improve design, administrative and effectiveness of government regulation to ensure it is fit for purpose.

The shift of the Taskforce from Treasury to the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet is likely to see a greater level of direction and leadership for both the Taskforce, and potential interfacing with the National Blockchain Roadmap given the Job Maker agenda during the COVID-19 recession.

Australia’s growing blockchain community will welcome this change as a real recognition of how blockchain and distributed ledger technology can play a key role in driving efficiency and automation as we emerge into a COVID and post COVID economy.