Story image

How blockchain will impact NZ’s economy

Distributed ledgers and blockchain are anticipated to provide a positive uplift to New Zealand’s economy, according to a new report.

The report, Distributed Ledgers and Blockchains – Opportunities for New Zealand, found that these emerging technologies would likely have a positive impact on high-tech jobs and digital exports for New Zealand. 

The report defines a distributed ledger as a set of data replicated across many networked computers.

Ideally, computers in the network are in different locations and spread across many countries. A distributed ledger uses protocols so changes are consistently replicated to each computer and the data converges to an agreed known state.

Blockchain technology is one type of distributed ledger. A blockchain ledger is immutable, which means data cannot be removed or changed once it is published. The ledger uses economic incentives to coordinate and drive the adoption of the ledger.

Recognising the interest and investment in blockchain internationally, Callaghan Innovation and blockchain venture studio Centrality commissioned the report to provide Kiwi businesses and innovators useful insights into this emerging technology. 

The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) contributed an equal proportion of funding to the research. The report does not represent policy advice.

Callaghan Innovation GM Erica Lloyd says, “Technology is now New Zealand’s third-biggest export sector, bringing in more than $16 billion a year in overall revenue, with plenty more headroom for further growth. Technological innovation is the path to lifting our earnings and productivity.”

“We expect this report will ignite further discussion on the potential of emerging technologies like blockchain and distributed ledgers. Although we are still in the early stages, there are substantial opportunities for us to both understand and apply blockchain towards sustainable and ground-breaking innovation that can support our economy.”

Centrality GM of strategic partnerships Andy Higgs said the report provided a useful analysis of the significant opportunities that exist for distributed ledger and blockchain technologies.

He states, “Blockchain presents a huge opportunity, with over $11 billion USD raised through initial coin offerings (ICOs) in the first half of 2018. 

“New Zealand has a chance to lead the way, thanks to our sense of fairness and social inclusiveness, to ensure all New Zealanders benefit from the full potential of blockchain and decentralisation.”

Distributed ledgers and blockchains are emerging general purpose technologies that are likely to have a significant impact across all aspects of the economy.

The report states that New Zealand has an opportunity to join world leaders in this space, which would likely have a significantly positive impact on high-tech jobs and digital exports.

The technologies could provide opportunities for a positive impact on many sectors, including primary industries, financial services, public services, arts and culture, science and research, and foreign aid. They also have the potential to contribute to regional economic development.

Over 20 billion USD have been allocated to blockchain startups from January 2017 to November 2018 through initial coin offerings.

These technologies are fundamentally changing how startup capital is raised and could prove a meaningful opportunity for New Zealand companies to access much-needed risk capital.

LG takes home over 140 awards at CES
Including Engadget Best of CES Award in TV category for fifth consecutive year for the LG Signature OLED TV R.
Expert comment: Google fined US$57mil for GDPR breaches
The committee examining the breaches found two types of breaches of the GDPR.
McAfee customer choice for Cloud Access Security
“This is the second time that McAfee has been named... and we believe this demonstrates our ability to stay ahead of the pack.”
The message behind the Apple/Samsung iTunes partnership
Futuresource has released its perspective on what Samsung Smart TV’s new iTunes Movies and TV Show app means for Apple as a company.
Cost keeping Kiwi companies from making the most of IoT
"To move past the barriers inhibiting production scale IoT, organisations have to solve the broader security and upgrade issues."
Cybercrime could cost companies US$5.2tril over next five years – survey
New research from Accenture found that only 30% of organisations are very confident in internet security.
Achieving cyber resilience in the telco industry - Accenture
Whether hackers are motivated by greed, or a curiosity to assess a telco’s weaknesses; the interconnected nature of the industry places it in a position of increased threat
Three ways 5G will impact power management in 2019
Power failures or any network interruptions are not an option. Rolling out 5G is complex and presents a unique challenge for telco providers.