• B Vrettos and M Bacina

$181m to fund Australia's future of finance and digital assets


A combination of funding from the Federal Government and Industry partners has culminated in $181 million to support a 10 year research program examining the digitization of assets.


The recipient, the Digital Finance Corporative Research Centre, aims to explore and develop ways to harness opportunities arising from the transformation of digital markets including the universal digitisation of assets.


The Centre says an asset digitised financial world will lead to:

  • "Distributed global marketplaces operating 24/7 and exchanging digitised assets instantaneously.

  • New capital supply chains driving producer’s and investor’s profits through direct access to new market demand and competitive liquidity.

  • Global competition for reliable and trusted investment environments, underpinned by real-time algorithmic compliance and enforcement.

  • Entirely new forms of economic activity and interactions"

The funding is reportedly made up of $60 million from the Federal Government and $121 million from a range of industry partners including the RBA, NAB, Macquarie Bank, Origin Energy, the NSX and Digital Asset (partly owned by the ASX).


Together the researchers will explore the potential to use blockchain technology and decentralised finance to facilitate digital asset trading as well as the broader regulatory context. The focus is reported to include exploring the ongoing development of Central Bank Digital Currencies.


The industry partners, their ambitions and the funding now available for the Centre present immense opportunities for blockchain development in Australia. As the research is likely to be guided by those partners, the partnership of Digital Asset is likely to propel the ASX CHESS replacement into new territory. The potential development of the project was foreshadowed discussions during National Blockchain Week titled "ASX DLT Solutions Ecosystem - What's actually happening" and its recent press at the Macquarie Technology Summit. Additionally, the RBA's involvement builds on previous discussions in relation to a wholesale digital currency and potentially "pointing to a future of programmable money".


The funding undoubtedly will fast track the development with these projects and with the Senate Select Committee on Australia as a Technology and Financial Centre hard at work on addressing the pain points for the industry, for their October report, we look forward to seeing the opportunities flourish from Centre in a robust regulatory environment.