In an annual shareholder letter sent by BlackRock CEO Larry Fink, Fink described how the digital assets industry has witnessed “very interesting developments.”
Specifically, Fink highlights the growth of Bitcoin and cryptocurrency usage in India, Brazil and parts of Africa. He describes how “dramatic advances in digital payments” are “bringing down costs and advancing financial inclusion.”
Bitcoin Magazine has closely followed these advancements in Bitcoin adoption, such as the growth in bitcoin transactions in India, the Bitcoin Beach Brazil project, Bitcoin Ekasi in South Africa and many more, all clear examples of increasing usage in countries where sovereign digital money is needed most.
Fink goes on to note that developed markets like the United States are lagging behind in comparison, leaving the cost of payments higher, in what may be a reflection on the United States’ own recent actions of cracking down on large exchanges. In addition, the collapse of the banks which provided financial services to these exchanges has further stifled the industry.
“In particular, the tokenization of asset classes offers the prospect of driving efficiencies in capital markets, shortening value chains, and improving cost and access for investors,” Fink writes. “At BlackRock we continue to explore the digital assets ecosystem, especially areas most relevant to our clients such as permissioned blockchains and tokenization of stocks and bonds.” Although he is discussing the tokenization of existing assets, it is curious to consider whether BlackRock and similarly large financial institutions will see through the veil of the government’s response to the recent bank collapses, and consider the primary use case of blockchain technology to be the tokenization of sound money.
This, after all, was its first use case — in the form of Bitcoin.
“While the industry is maturing, there are clearly elevated risks and a need for regulation in this market,” Fink concludes. “BlackRock is committed to operational excellence, and we plan to apply the same standards and controls to digital assets that we do across our business.”
Published at Fri, 17 Mar 2023 18:38:42 +0100